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Report of the National Intelligence Council’s 2020 Project
Based on consultations with nongovernmental experts around the world
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Contents Executive Summary Methodology Introduction The Contradictions of Globalization An Expanding and Integrating Global Economy The Technology Revolution Lingering Social Inequalities Page 9 19 25 27 29 34 37 40 47 48 51 56 59 63 64 73 73 79 83 93 93 97 98 100 104 111 Fictional Scenario: Davos World Rising Powers: The Changing Geopolitical Landscape Rising Asia Other Rising States? The “Aging” Powers Growing Demands for Energy US Unipolarity—How Long Can It Last? Fictional Scenario: Pax Americana New Challenges to Governance Halting Progress on Democratization Identity Politics Fictional Scenario: A New Caliphate Pervasive Insecurity Transmuting International Terrorism Intensifying Internal Conflicts Rising Powers: Tinder for Conflict? The WMD Factor Fictional Scenario: Cycle of Fear Policy Implications .
1990-2003 31 32 48 50 51 59 60 80 82 83 101 5 . 1900–2025 Key Areas of Radical Islamic Activities Since 1992 EU: Estimated and Projected Muslim Population.Graphics and Tables China’s and India’s Per Capita GDPs Rising Against US When China’s and India’s GDPs Would Exceed Today’s Rich Countries Telescoping the Population of the World to 2020 China’s Rise Projected Rise in Defense Spending. 2003–2025 Fossil Fuels Will Continue to Dominate in 2020 An Expanding European Union Number of Religious Adherents. 1985–2025 Global Trends in Internal Conflict.
China: Long-Term Prospects Asia: The Cockpit for Global Change? Global Aging and Migration Could Europe Become A Superpower? The Geopolitics of Gas Eurasian Countries: Going Their Separate Ways? Climate Change and Its Implications Through 2020 Latin America in 2020: Will Globalization Cause the Region to Split? Organized Crime Cyber Warfare? How Can Sub-Saharan Africa Move Forward? International Institutions in Crisis The Rules of War: Entering “No Man’s Land” Post-Combat Environments Pose the Biggest Challenge Is the United States’ Technological Prowess at Risk? How the World Sees the United States 8 26 28 30 36 38 52 53 55 58 61 62 74 76 78 96 97 99 102 103 104 112 114 7 .Special Topics The 2020 Global Landscape Mapping the Global Future What Would an Asian Face on Globalization Look Like? What Could Derail Globalization? Biotechnology: Panacea and Weapon The Status of Women in 2020 Risks to Chinese Economic Growth India vs.
World economy substantially larger. Whether rise of China/India occurs smoothly. backsliding by fragile democracies. welfare systems. Environmental and ethical issues even more to the fore. Energy supplies “in the ground” sufficient to meet global demand. whether US loses S&T edge. supply disruptions. Political instability in producer countries. growth of jihadist ideology. and integrate migrant populations. managing or containing financial crises. Extent to which connectivity challenges governments. radiological. Africa. Arc of instability spanning Middle East.The 2020 Global Landscape Relative Certainties Globalization largely irreversible. Political Islam remains a potent force. degree to which Asian countries set new “rules of the game. Willingness and ability of states and international institutions to accommodate these actors. Ability to manage flashpoints and competition for resources. Improved WMD capabilities of some states. Increasing number of global firms facilitate spread of new technologies. whether EU becomes a superpower. Asia. technologically. Whether other countries will more openly challenge Washington.” Extent of gaps between “haves” and “have-nots”. chemical. Extent to which new technologies create or resolve ethical dilemmas. Growing power of nonstate actors. ability of terrorists to acquire biological. US will remain single most powerful actor economically. Rise of Asia and advent of possible new economic middle-weights. Key Uncertainties Whether globalization will pull in lagging economies. likely to become less Westernized. Impact of religiosity on unity of states and potential for conflict. 8 . More or fewer nuclear powers. Aging populations in established powers. Ability of EU and Japan to adapt work forces. Precipitating events leading to overthrow of regimes. or nuclear weapons. Great power conflict escalating into total war unlikely. militarily.
Indonesia’s economy could also approach the economies of individual European countries by 2020. The role of the United States will be an important variable in how the world is shaped. New Global Players The likely emergence of China and India. the rise of these new powers is a virtual certainty. The end of the Cold War shifted the tectonic plates. and a more pervasive sense of insecurity. Emerging powers in Asia. • Most forecasts indicate that by 2020 China’s gross national product (GNP) will exceed that of individual Western economic powers except for the United States. • Barring an abrupt reversal of the process of globalization or any major upheavals in these countries. could surpass all but the largest European countries by 2020. A combination of sustained high economic growth. influencing the path that states and nonstate actors choose to follow. and transatlantic divisions are among the issues that have only come to a head in recent years. retrenchment in Eurasia. as well as others. including terrorism. The very magnitude and speed of change resulting from a globalizing world—apart from its precise character—will be a defining feature of the world out to 2020.Executive Summary At no time since the formation of the Western alliance system in 1949 have the shape and nature of international alignments been in such a state of flux. but the repercussions from these momentous events are still unfolding. and large populations will be at the root of the expected rapid rise in economic and political power for both countries. expanding military capabilities.” the 21st century may be seen as the time when Asia.3 billion respectively by 2020—their standard of living need not approach Western levels for these countries to become important economic powers. In the same way that commentators refer to the 1900s as the “American Century. with impacts potentially as dramatic as those in the previous two centuries. comes into its own. 9 . a roiling Middle East. Yet how China and India exercise their growing power and whether they relate cooperatively or competitively to other powers in the international system are key uncertainties. The economies of other developing countries. India’s GNP will have overtaken or be on the threshold of overtaking European economies. new challenges to governance. As we map the future. led by China and India. Other significant characteristics include: the rise of new powers.4 billion and almost 1. the prospects for increasing global prosperity and the limited likelihood of great power conflict provide an overall favorable environment for coping with what are otherwise daunting challenges. Because of the sheer size of China’s and India’s populations—projected by the US Census Bureau to be 1. such as Brazil. as new major global players—similar to the advent of a united Germany in the 19th century and a powerful United States in the early 20th century—will transform the geopolitical landscape.
and endemic conflict—are likely to continue spilling over into Russia. However. less fixed than in the past. linked by flows of telecommunications. But the future of globalization is not fixed. terrorism. Impact of Globalization We see globalization—growing interconnectedness reflected in the expanded flows of information. states and nonstate actors—including both private companies and NGOs—will struggle to shape its contours. and for the rising powers of China and India. and people throughout the world—as an overarching “mega-trend. but it also will be challenged to evaluate its regional status and role. Russia has the potential to enhance its international role with others due to its position as a major oil and gas exporter. Russia faces a severe demographic crisis resulting from low birth rates. will co-exist. The “arriviste” powers—China.” a force so ubiquitous that it will substantially shape all the other major trends in the world of 2020. With these and other new global actors. and unified trade bloc—an enlarged Europe will be able to increase its weight on the international scene. or they face a period of protracted economic stasis. Yet it is also possible. and accommodate growing immigrant populations (chiefly from Muslim countries). technology. reform their social welfare. the effects of which—Muslim extremism. poor medical care. To the south. single currency. Meanwhile. stable democratic governments. Moscow is likely to be an important partner both for the established powers. While these social and political factors limit the extent to which Russia can be a major global player. capital. Competition for allegiances will be more open. Traditional geographic groupings will increasingly lose salience in international relations. Japan faces a similar aging crisis that could crimp its longer run economic recovery. Some aspects of globalization—such as the growing global interconnectedness stemming from the information technology (IT) revolution— almost certainly will be irreversible. aligned and nonaligned. Tokyo may have to choose between “balancing” against or “bandwagoning” with China. goods. North and South. and perhaps others such as Brazil and Indonesia—have the potential to render obsolete the old categories of East and West. education. and tax systems. But aging populations and shrinking work forces in most countries will have an important impact on the continent. highly skilled work force. it borders an unstable region in the Caucasus and Central Asia. that the process of globalization could be slowed or even stopped. how we mentally map the world in 2020 will change radically.By most measures—market size. Asians’ lingering resentments and concerns over Korean unification and cross-Taiwan Strait tensions point to a complicated process for achieving regional equilibrium. the United States and Europe. India. Europe’s strength could be in providing a model of global and regional governance to the rising powers. services. A state-bound world and a world of mega-cities. just as the era of globalization 10 . and a potentially explosive AIDS situation. trade and finance. Either European countries adapt their work forces. the crisis over North Korea is likely to come to a head sometime over the next 15 years. although unlikely. developed and developing.
and others as evidence of a relative decline. too. India. especially if they feel squeezed by their growing dominance in key sectors of the global marketplace. skipping over phases that other high-tech leaders such as the United States and Europe had to traverse in order to advance. and efforts by global corporations to diversify their high-tech operations will foster the spread of new technologies. some now in the “First World” may see the closing gap with China. In contrast. even though the older powers are likely to remain global leaders out to 2020. Indeed. The growing two-way flow of high-tech brain power between the developing world and the West. The greatest benefits of globalization will accrue to countries and groups that can access and adopt new technologies. it is projected to be about 80 percent larger than it was in 2000. both developed and developing. there will be cyclical ups and downs and periodic financial or other crises. and greater S&T stature. Those countries that pursue such policies could leapfrog stages of development. But the gap between the “haves” and “have-nots” will widen unless the “have-not” countries pursue policies that support application of new technologies— such as good governance. more firms becoming world-class multinationals. Those left behind in the developing world may resent China and India’s rise. The United States. By having the fastest-growing consumer markets. And large pockets of poverty will persist even in “winner” countries. though it will remain in 2020 the most important single country across all the dimensions of power. Yet the benefits of globalization won’t be global. Asia looks set to displace Western countries as the focus for international economic dynamism—provided Asia’s rapid economic growth continues. High-tech breakthroughs—such as in genetically modified organisms and increased food production—could provide a safety net eliminating the threat of starvation and ameliorating basic quality of life issues for poor countries. globally available technologies—whether the technologies are acquired through a country’s own basic research or from technology leaders. but this basic growth trajectory has powerful momentum behind it. Most countries around the world. Barring such a turn of events. cheap technologies to fuel—although at a slower rate—their own development. a nation’s level of technological achievement generally will be defined in terms of its investment in integrating and applying the new.in the late 19th and early 20th centuries was reversed by catastrophic war and global depression. Of course. will see its relative power position eroded. and market reforms. 11 . and average per capita income will be roughly 50 percent higher. Rising powers will see exploiting the opportunities afforded by the emerging global marketplace as the best way to assert their great power status on the world stage. the world economy is likely to continue growing impressively: by 2020. will benefit from gains in the world economy. the increasing size of the information computer-literate work force in some developing countries. and even the poorest countries will be able to leverage prolific. China and India are well positioned to become technology leaders. universal education.
is among the key uncertainties. perhaps accompanied by a major disruption of oil supplies. with a greater share provided by petroleum. will place enormous new strains on governments. both in size and origin. shaping their foreign policies. New Challenges to Governance The nation-state will continue to be the dominant unit of the global order. an increasing preference for natural gas may reinforce regional relationships—such as with Russia or North Africa—given the interdependence of pipeline delivery. For Europe. but economic globalization and the dispersion of technologies. and those operating in the global arena will be more diverse. bio-. Growing connectivity will be accompanied by the proliferation of virtual communities of interest. although it must increasingly compete with Asia to retain its edge and may lose significant ground in some sectors. By 2020. While North America. The Internet in particular will spur 12 . Japan. India. and West Africa—that are being counted on to provide increased output involve substantial political or economic risk. or Brazil. and Europe might collectively continue to dominate international political and financial institutions. and other developing countries’ growing energy needs suggest a growing preoccupation with energy. Most experts assess that with substantial investment in new capacity. complicating the ability of states to govern. especially information technologies. more Asian and less Western in orientation. globalization could be equated in the popular mind with a rising Asia. many of the areas—the Caspian Sea. The United States is still in a position to retain its overall lead. Their ranks will include a growing number based in such countries as China. information and materials technology could further bolster China and India’s prospects. Total energy consumed probably will rise by about 50 percent in the next two decades compared to a 34 percent expansion from 1980-2000. Venezuela. encompassing the current.• The expected next revolution in high technology involving the convergence of nano-. Such corporations. But on the supply side. Traditional suppliers in the Middle East are also increasingly unstable. Both countries are investing in basic research in these fields and are well placed to be leaders in a number of key fields. further integrating the world economy. will be increasingly outside the control of any one state and will be key agents of change in dispersing technology widely. An expanding global economy will increase demand for many raw materials. globalization will take on an increasingly non-Western character. such as oil. large multinationals. Europe risks slipping behind Asia in some of these technologies. India. • • China. replacing its current association with Americanization. Thus sharper demand-driven competition for resources. and promoting economic progress in the developing world. overall energy supplies will be sufficient to meet global demands. More firms will become global.
A combination of factors—youth bulges in many Arab states. Regionally based institutions will be particularly challenged to meet the complex transnational threats posed by terrorism.the creation of even more global movements. rallying disparate ethnic and national groups and perhaps even creating an authority that transcends national boundaries. nongovernmental organizations. some of which never really embraced democracy. Contradictory forces will be at work: authoritarian regimes will face new pressures to democratize. • Outside the Middle East. Beijing may pursue an “Asian way of democracy. the influence of religious education. but fragile new democracies may lack the adaptive capacity to survive and develop. and increasingly from Southeast Asia into the northern regions—more countries will be multi-ethnic and will face the challenge of integrating migrants into their societies while respecting their ethnic and religious identities. Yet democratization and greater pluralism could gain ground in key Middle Eastern countries which thus far have been excluded from the process by repressive regimes. religious identities provide followers with a ready-made community that serves as a “social safety net” in times of need—particularly important to migrants. The so-called “third wave” of democratization may be partially reversed by 2020—particularly among the states of the former Soviet Union and in Southeast Asia. With the international system itself undergoing profound flux. Part of the pressure on governance will come from new forms of identity politics centered on religious convictions. organized crime. With migration on the increase in several places around the world—from North Africa and the Middle East into Europe. and the Islamization of such institutions as trade unions. some of the institutions that are charged with managing global problems may be overwhelmed by them.” which could involve elections at the local level and a consultative mechanism on the national level. political Islam will continue to appeal to Muslim migrants who are attracted to the more prosperous West for employment opportunities but do not feel at home in what they perceive as an alien and hostile culture. Latin America and the Caribbean into the United States. and political parties—will ensure that political Islam remains a major force. political Islam will have a significant global impact leading to 2020. and WMD proliferation. perhaps with the Communist Party retaining control over the central government. which may emerge as a robust force in international affairs. Such post-World War II creations as the United Nations and the 13 . In a rapidly globalizing world experiencing population shifts. Regimes that were able to manage the challenges of the 1990s could be overwhelmed by those of 2020. poor economic prospects. Chinese leaders will face a dilemma over how much to accommodate pluralistic pressures to relax political controls or risk a popular backlash if they do not. In particular.
The rigidities of alliance systems before World War I and during the interwar period. and whether overall economic growth is sufficiently robust to absorb a growing number of displaced workers. Some internal conflicts. with expanses of territory and populations devoid of effective governmental control. Such territories can become sanctuaries for transnational terrorists (such as al-Qa’ida in Afghanistan) or for criminals and drug cartels (such as in Colombia). Outsourcing on a large scale would strengthen the antiglobalization movement. risk escalating into regional conflicts. unlike during previous centuries when local conflicts sparked world wars. Although a leveling off point has been reached where we can expect fewer such conflicts than during the last decade. religious extremism. hundreds of millions of working-age adults will become available for employment in what is evolving into a more integrated world labor market. lagging economies. The growing dependence on global financial and trade networks will help deter interstate 14 . globalization will profoundly shake up the status quo—generating enormous economic.international financial institutions risk sliding into obsolescence unless they adjust to the profound changes taking place in the global system. internal conflicts can result in failing or failed states. particularly those that involve ethnic groups straddling national boundaries. • Weak governments. and other emerging countries into the global economy. • This enormous work force—a growing portion of which will be well educated—will be an attractive. The likelihood of great power conflict escalating into total war in the next 15 years is lower than at any time in the past century. competitive source of low-cost labor at the same time that technological innovation is expanding the range of globally mobile occupations. Pervasive Insecurity We foresee a more pervasive sense of insecurity—which may be as much based on psychological perceptions as physical threats—by 2020. the continued prevalence of troubled and institutionally weak states means that such conflicts will continue to occur. and youth bulges will align to create a perfect storm for internal conflict in certain regions. Even as most of the world gets richer. and consequently political convulsions. virtually assured that small conflicts would be quickly generalized. The transition will not be painless and will hit the middle classes of the developed world in particular. bringing more rapid job turnover and requiring professional retooling. as well as the two-bloc standoff during the Cold War. cultural. With the gradual integration of China. how flexible labor markets become. The number of internal conflicts is down significantly since the late 1980s and early 1990s when the breakup of the Soviet Union and Communist regimes in Central Europe allowed suppressed ethnic and nationalistic strife to flare. including the rise of new powers. India. At their most extreme. Where these pressures lead will depend on how political leaders respond.
The absence of effective conflict resolution mechanisms in some regions. 15 . and more destructive conventional munitions—create circumstances encouraging the preemptive use of military force. hawalas1. and southern Thailand. and lethality of their delivery systems as well as develop capabilities to penetrate missile defenses. and there is a substantial risk that broad Islamic movements akin to al-Qa’ida will merge with local separatist movements. the revival of Muslim identity will create a framework for the spread of radical Islamic ideology inside and outside the Middle East. We expect that by 2020 al-Qa’ida will be superceded by similarly inspired Islamic extremist groups. and individuals that do not need a stationary headquarters to plan and carry out operations. Facilitated by global communications. 1 Hawalas constitute an informal banking system. Chechnya. Current nuclear weapons states will continue to improve the survivability of their deterrent forces and almost certainly will improve the reliability. and increase the risk of conflicts escalating into nuclear ones.e.. Moreover. the rise of nationalism in some states. and fund-raising will become virtual (i. such as Palestine. Kashmir. Transmuting International Terrorism The key factors that spawned international terrorism show no signs of abating over the next 15 years. and learning. where religious identity has traditionally not been as strong. corruption. and has emerged in response to government repression. Informal networks of charitable foundations. This revival has been accompanied by a deepening solidarity among Muslims caught up in national or regional separatist struggles. evolving into an eclectic array of groups. Moreover. Iraq. allowing for instant connectivity. the assistance of proliferators will reduce the time required for additional countries to develop nuclear weapons. advances in modern weaponry—longer ranges. Central Asia and Western Europe. Countries without nuclear weapons—especially in the Middle East and Northeast Asia—might decide to seek them as it becomes clear that their neighbors and regional rivals are doing so. madrassas. targeting guidance. communication. precision delivery. and other mechanisms will continue to proliferate and be exploited by radical elements. Should conflict occur that involved one or more of the great powers. Mindanao. including Southeast Asia. alienation among unemployed youths will swell the ranks of those vulnerable to terrorist recruitment. and the raw emotions and tensions on both sides of some issues—for example. The open demonstration of nuclear capabilities by any state would further discredit the current nonproliferation regime. the consequences would be significant. weapons know-how. and ineffectiveness. cells. the Taiwan Strait or India/Pakistan issues—could lead to miscalculation. online). will enable the terrorist threat to become increasingly decentralized. cause a possible shift in the balance of power. Training materials. Information technology.conflict but does not eliminate the possibility. accuracy.
A New Caliphate provides an example of how a global movement fueled by radical religious identity politics could constitute a challenge to Western norms and values as the foundation of the global system. biological. a nuclear device. even more likely. less likely. Bioterrorism appears particularly suited to the smaller. The scenarios are not mutually exclusive: we may see two or three of these scenarios unfold in some combination or a wide range of other scenarios. • • • Of course. These scenarios are not meant as actual forecasts. but they describe possible worlds upon whose threshold we may be entering. better-informed groups. from seriously challenging the nation-state system to establishing a more robust and inclusive globalization. Terrorists probably will be most original not in the technologies or weapons they use but rather in their operational concepts—i. particularly in contrast to the relative stasis of the Cold War era. radiological and nuclear weapons increases the risk of a major terrorist attack involving WMD.. Cycle of Fear provides an example of how concerns about proliferation might increase to the point that large-scale intrusive security measures are taken to prevent outbreaks of deadly attacks.Terrorist attacks will continue to primarily employ conventional weapons. or support arrangements for attacks. we see several ways in which major global changes could take shape in the next 15 years. to cause physical damage to information systems. Possible Futures In this era of great flux. these scenarios illustrate just a few of the possible futures that may develop over the next 15 years. over the next 15 years could reshape the globalization process—giving it a more non-Western face and transforming the political playing field as well. Our greatest concern is that terrorists might acquire biological agents or. 16 . but the wide range of possibilities we can imagine suggests that this period will be characterized by increased flux. depending on how trends interweave and play out: • Davos World provides an illustration of how robust economic growth. possibly introducing an Orwellian world.e. either of which could cause mass casualties. Strong terrorist interest in acquiring chemical. design. Pax Americana takes a look at how US predominance may survive the radical changes to the global political landscape and serve to fashion a new and inclusive global order. led by China and India. We also expect that terrorists will attempt cyber attacks to disrupt critical information networks and. the scope. In the body of this paper we develop these concepts in four fictional scenarios which were extrapolated from the key trends we discuss in this report. incorporating new twists and constantly adapting to counterterrorist efforts.
The success of the US-led counterterrorism campaign will hinge on the capabilities and resolve of individual countries to fight terrorism on their own soil. rather than NATO. Where US-Asia relations lead will result as much or more from what the Asians work out among themselves as any action by Washington. and empowerment of Muslim reformers would be viewed positively by the broad Muslim communities who do not support the radical agenda of Islamic extremists. biological. both of which formed the bedrock of US power in the post-World War II period. 17 . and others absent a single overarching threat on which to build consensus. US dependence on foreign oil supplies also makes it more vulnerable as the competition for secure access grows and the risks of supply side disruptions increase. and/or nuclear weapons by Iran and North Korea and the possible acquisition of such weapons by others by 2020 also increase the potential cost of any military action by the US against them or their allies. will increasingly become the primary institution for Europe. the Middle East. The possession of chemical. broader economic opportunities. Some trends we probably can bank on include dramatically altered alliances and relationships with Europe and Asia. playing a pivotal role across the broad range of issues—economic. The development of more open political systems and representation. more countries will be in a position to make the United States pay a heavy price for any military action they oppose. One could envisage a range of possibilities from the US enhancing its role as balancer between contending forces to Washington being seen as increasingly irrelevant. Asia. The EU. political. The US economy will become more vulnerable to fluctuations in the fortunes of others as global commercial networking deepens. and military—that no other state will match by 2020. technological. the United States will retain enormous advantages. While no single country looks within striking distance of rivaling US military power by 2020. A counterterrorism strategy that approaches the problem on multiple fronts offers the greatest chance of containing—and ultimately reducing—the terrorist threat.Policy Implications The role of the United States will be an important shaper of the international order in 2020. Although the challenges ahead will be daunting. Counterterrorism efforts in the years ahead—against a more diverse set of terrorists who are connected more by ideology than by geography—will be a more elusive challenge than focusing on a centralized organization such as al-Qa’ida. Dealing with the US-Asia relationship may arguably be more challenging for Washington because of the greater flux resulting from the rise of two world-class economic and political giants yet to be fully integrated into the international order. and the role which Europeans shape for themselves on the world stage is most likely to be projected through it. Washington may be increasingly confronted with the challenge of managing—at an acceptable cost to itself—relations with Europe.
Some of the current anti-Americanism is likely to lessen as globalization takes on more of a nonWestern face. The rapid dispersion of biological and other lethal forms of technology increases the potential for an individual not affiliated with any terrorist group to be able to wreak widespread loss of life. old and new. and the role of multilateral institutions. 18 . At the same time. However. particularly in shaping a new international order that integrates disparate regions and reconciles divergent interests. These issues include the environment and climate change. cloning and biotechnology. privacy. however. the attacker will have an easier job than the defender because the defender must prepare against a large array of possibilities. Despite likely high-tech breakthroughs that will make it easier to track and detect terrorists at work. international law regulating conflict. the younger generation of leaders—unlike during the post-World War II period—has no personal recollection of the United States as its “liberator” and is more likely to diverge with Washington’s thinking on a range of issues. human rights. have the potential to divide worldwide publics and challenge US leadership. Over the next 15 years the increasing centrality of ethical issues. The United States increasingly will have to battle world public opinion. the terrorist threat is likely to remain. the United States will have many opportunities to extend its advantages. and Kashmir to ensure they do not get out of hand if a peace settlement cannot be reached. North Korea. which has dramatically shifted since the end of the Cold War. Taiwan. In helping to map out the global future.Even if the numbers of extremists dwindle. the scenarios and trends we analyze in the paper suggest the possibility of harnessing the power of the new players in contributing to global security and relieving the US of some of the burden. The United States probably will continue to be called on to help manage such conflicts as Palestine.
who facilitated several of our sessions and informed our thinking on methodologies. identity politics.” We surveyed and studied various methodologies (see box on page 22) and reviewed a number of recent “futures” studies. • The UN Millennium Project—an independent body that advises the UN on strategies for achieving the Millennium development goals—provided invaluable data on crosscutting issues. we organized six regional conferences in countries on four continents—one in the United Kingdom. as well as on methodologies and approaches for thinking about the future. which included hundreds of foreign participants. climate change and many others (see box on page 20 for a complete list of the conferences). government officials. South Africa. Australia. and Chile. We also consulted the Eurasia Group. and the Stimson Center. Jim Dewar. members of nongovernmental organizations and other institutions—who could speak authoritatively on the key drivers of change and conceptualize broad regional themes. we held a conference in the Washington. business people. Canada. and New Zealand to learn their thinking. In addition to the conferences held overseas. former head of Shell International’s scenarios project2—to discuss their most recent work and the methodologies they employed to think about the future. We augmented these discussions with conferences and workshops that took a more indepth view of specific issues of interest. who organized several seminars of academic experts over the course of more than a • 2 Shell International Limited has for decades used scenarios to identify business risks and opportunities. Our regional experts also contributed valuable insights on how the rest of the world views the United States. Besides convening a meeting of counterparts in the UK. two in Hungary—to solicit the views of foreign experts from a variety of backgrounds—academics. Director of the RAND Corporation’s Center for Longer Range Global Policy and the Future of the Human Condition. 19 . President.Methodology To launch the NIC 2020 Project. Global Scenarios. And we consulted numerous organizations and individuals on the substantive aspects of this study. gender issues. Ged Davis led this effort for many years. Oppenheimer. Other individual scholars we consulted included Michael F. offering lessons from prior periods of “globalization. DC area on India. Princeton University historian Harold James gave the keynote address. including new technologies. Oxford Analytica. and Ged Davis. CENTRA Technologies. in November 2003 we brought together some 25 leading outside experts from a wide variety of disciplines and backgrounds to engage in a broad-gauged discussion with Intelligence Community analysts. the changing nature of warfare. Singapore. Georgetown and now Princeton Professor John Ikenberry. Participants explored key trends that were presented by experts and then developed alternative scenarios for how the trends might play out over the next 15 years. We invited three leading “futurists”—Ted Gordon of the UN’s Millennium Project.
Chair. 2004) Information and Communications. South Africa (March 2004) Global Evolution of Dual-Use Biotechnology—Washington. DC (December 2003) African Experts’ Roundtable—Washington. whose related statistical and scenario work is featured on our Web site. Pennsylvania State University. who organized several stimulating conferences on S&T topics. Graduate School of International Studies. Technological and Social Cohesion and the Nation-State— Washington. Hungary (April 2004) Europe NIC 2020 Workshop—Budapest. who provided invaluable insights on global trends pertaining to religion. Enid Schoettle. Senior Adviser on Technology Policy and Director of the Biotechnology and Public Policy Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. Maryland (June 2004) Conference on Muslims in Europe—Oxford. Princeton University. Department of Politics. Professor Barry B. Henry Wendt Chair in Political Economy. and Jeffrey Herbst. University of Denver. DC (August 2004) Business Leader Roundtable Discussion—CIA Headquarters (September 2004) India and Geopolitics in 2020–Rosslyn. UK (March 2004) Africa NIC 2020 Workshop—Johannesburg. DC (January 2004) Middle East NIC 2020 Workshop—Wilton Park. American Enterprise Institute. DC (September 2004) Wrap-Up NIC 2020 Project Workshop—Virginia (October 2004) Consultation on Preliminary NIC 2020 Draft with UK experts and the International Institute of Strategic Studies—London. NIC 2020 Project Conferences and Workshops Presentation by Joint Doctrine and Concepts Center (MoD/UK)—CIA Headquarters (September 2003) Conference on Anti-Americanism—Wye Plantation (October 2003) Inaugural NIC 2020 Project Conference—Washington. an independent contractor who conducted substantial open-source research. Philip Jenkins. DC (November 2003) Professor Ikenberry’s series of International Relations Roundtables—Georgetown University (November 2003-November 2004) Joint US-Commonwealth Intelligence Officials’ Conference —Washington. England (October 2004) 20 . who provided us with important perspectives on demographic issues. Anne Solomon. Hungary (April 2004) Global Identity Roundtable Discussion—CIA Headquarters (May 2004) Asia NIC 2020 Workshop—Singapore (May 2004) Conference on The Changing Nature of Warfare—Center for Naval Analysis (May 2004) Latin America NIC 2020 Workshop—Santiago. DC. who was instrumental in our analysis of issues pertaining to Africa. Virginia (September 2004) Stimson Center-sponsored roundtables on Scenarios—Washington. Global Power. DC (March 2004) Russia and Eurasia NIC 2020 Workshop—Budapest. Hughes. England (July 2004) Women in 2020—Washington. DC (Spring-Summer. and Conflict—Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) (June 2004) Climate Change—University of Maryland (June 2004) NSA Tech 2020—Baltimore.year to examine various aspects of US preeminence and critique preliminary drafts of the report. Wealth. Chile (June 2004) Technological Frontiers. who was one of the architects of Global Trends 2015. Distinguished Professor of History and Religious Studies. Nicholas Eberstadt. Elke Matthews.
Adolfo Ibañez University. We studied extensively key futures work developed in the public and private sectors that employed scenario techniques. identified the “best practices. who provided us with useful data and shared their ideas about global trends. 21 . Bard College. We also want to thank our colleagues in the US Intelligence Community.• The following organizations arranged the regional conferences for the project: Wilton Park.” and then developed our own unique approach. Scenarios help decisionmakers to break through conventional thinking and basic assumptions so that a broader range of possibilities can be considered—including new risks and opportunities. the South African Institute for International Affairs. and Shell International. and initiated follow-up roundtable discussions and conferences. • Scenario Development Process While straight-line projections are useful in establishing a baseline and positing a mainline scenario. combining trend analysis and scenarios. Nueva Mayoria. The six international workshops generated an enormous amount of data and analysis on the key drivers that are likely to lead to regional change in the 2020 timeframe. the NIC 2020 Project staff created a Scenario Steering Group (SSG)—a small aggregation of respected members of the policy community.” Scenarios offer a more dynamic view of possible futures and focus attention on the underlying interactions that may have particular policy significance. They are especially useful in thinking about the future during times of great uncertainty. (see box on page 22). SSG examined the product of the international workshops and explored fledgling scenarios for plausibility and policy relevance. These key findings were set aside as the raw material for development of the global scenarios. and looked at the regional product in its totality to identify salient cross-regional trends. drafted papers. and the Asia Society. Central European University. Papers that influenced our work include those produced by Goldman Sachs. Ltd. The NIC 2020 Project staff conducted additional research. To jumpstart the global scenario development process. which we believe is the case for the next 15 years. Timothy Sharp and Professor Ewan Anderson of Sharp Global Solutions Ltd arranged a conference in London of UK experts to critique a preliminary draft of the report. think tanks. the UK Ministry of Defense. We analyzed the findings from the regional workshops. highlighted key regional trends that had global implications. and analysts from within the Intelligence Community—to examine summaries of the data collected and consider scenario concepts that take into account the interaction between key drivers of global change. they typically present a one-dimensional view of how the future might unfold and tend to focus attention exclusively on the “prediction.
The RAND Corporation—as part of a parallel. including in association with the NSA Tech 2020 project (see below). risks. Chairman. an integral part of the UK Ministry of Defense. Shell builds global scenarios every three years to help its leaders make better decisions. and opportunities. affirmed our intent to develop scenarios for policymakers. Peter Schwartz. and the application of scenario work to the private sector. technology-driven scenario concepts. We used a similar approach. and providing thought-provoking. 22 . We also benefited from consultations with other organizations that do futures work: The Joint Doctrine and Concepts Centre. Drs. challenges. In addition. Following initial research. including the use of drivers. NIC-sponsored effort to update its 2001 monograph The Global Revolution: Bio/Nano/Materials Trends and Their Synergies with IT by 2015—provided substantive guidance by delineating technology trends and their interaction.Scenario and Futures Work That Influenced Our Thinking Our consultations with Ged Davis. provided us with invaluable insights on the nature of surprise. produced by the UK Defense Evaluation and Research Agency. Global Business Network and author of Inevitable Surprises. sharing their insights on understanding the future based on their vast experience in the field. We have incorporated valuable insights from this project and are grateful to NSA for stimulating a rewarding Intelligence Community dialogue on future trends. seeking throughout the process to ensure a balance between unconventional thinking and plausibility. Toffler Associates contributed ideas at several points. reviewed over 50 futures studies. undertook an ambitious attempt to develop a coherent view of how the world might develop over the next 30 years in ways that could alter the UK’s security. Shell’s team spends about a year conducting interviews and holding workshops to develop and finalize the scenarios. The project—Strategic Trends—was designed to assist the MOD in gaining a strategic understanding of future threats. Meta-Analysis of Published Material on Drivers and Trends. Alvin and Heidi Toffler participated in our capstone conference. The National Security Agency’s project—Tech 2020—also helped identify key technology convergences expected to impact society between now and 2020. identifying applications that will transform the future. commenting extensively on drafts. the interpretation of insights across disciplines. formerly the leader of Shell International’s scenariobuilding effort.
gov/nic. 3 To access these new innovations log on to the NIC website: www. eight global scenarios that held particular promise were developed. The site also provided a link to massive quantities of basic data for reference and analysis. and ultimately narrow the number of scenarios included in the final publication to four. The NIC then held a wrap-up workshop with a broader group of experts to examine the eight scenarios. unclassified NIC Web site with publication of this report. Nor are they mutually exclusive. worldwide dialogue about the future.cia. With the help of CENTRA Technologies. critiqued. the NIC 2020 Project also employs information technology and analytic tools unavailable in earlier NIC efforts. Interactive Tools Significantly. password-protected Web site to serve as a repository for discussion papers and workshop summaries. and debated within the SSG and with other groups that the NIC engaged.3 Much of this supporting material involving the Empirical Web-boxes Scenario capability has now been transferred to the open. It contained interactive tools to keep our foreign and domestic experts engaged and created “handson” computer simulations that allowed novice and expert alike to develop their own scenarios. Its global sweep and scope required that we engage in a continuing. discuss the merits and weaknesses of each. we created an interactive.After scenario concepts were explored. 23 . The scenarios depicted in this publication were selected for their relevance to policymakers and because they cause us to question key assumptions about the future—but they do not attempt to predict it.
the role of the United States will be an important variable in how the world is shaped. Rising powers: the changing geopolitical landscape. Underlying the broad characteristics listed above are a number of specific trends that overlap and play off each other: • The expanding global economy. international bodies including international organizations. nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and others can mitigate distinctly negative trends. • • • • • • • As with previous upheavals. In addition to the pivotal role of the United States. Increased pressures on international institutions. such as greater insecurity. Halting democratization. The global aging phenomenon. influencing the path that states and nonstate actors choose to follow. The potential for catastrophic terrorism. A spreading radical Islamic ideology. and advance positive trends. The very magnitude and speed of change resulting from a globalizing world—regardless of its precise character—will be a defining feature of the world out to 2020. Emerging powers. New challenges to governance. multinational corporations. Lingering social inequalities. the seeds of major change have been laid in the trends apparent today. The proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. As a result. the world of 2020 will differ markedly from the world of 2004. As we survey the next 15 years.Introduction The international order is in the midst of profound change: at no time since the formation of the Western alliance system in 1949 have the shape and nature of international alignments been in such a state of flux as they have during the past decade. Other significant characteristics include: • • • • The contradictions of globalization. • • The accelerating pace of scientific change and the dispersion of dualuse technologies. and in the intervening years the United States will face major international challenges that differ significantly from those we face today. 25 . A more pervasive sense of insecurity.
Through the next 15 years. and substantially deepen global interdependence. we now view it more as a “mega-trend”—a force so ubiquitous that it will substantially shape all of the other major trends in the world of 2020. “[By 2020] globalization is likely to take on much more of a ‘nonWestern’ face…” The reach of globalization was substantially broadened during the last 20 years by Chinese and Indian economic liberalization. are likely to be irreversible. the collapse of the Soviet Union. which has transformed politics almost everywhere. governments would find difficult to expunge. too. services. enabling smaller firms as well as large multinationals to market across borders and bringing heretofore nontraded services into the international arena. although the pace of global economic expansion may ebb and flow. Certain aspects of globalization. such as the growing global inter-connectedness stemming from the information technology revolution. powerful as it is. cultural. it will profoundly shake up the status quo almost everywhere—generating enormous economic.’” 27 . capital. The freer flow of people across national borders will continue to face social and political obstacles even when there is a pressing need for migrant workers. is a phenomenon that even repressive Yet the process of globalization. raise world living standards. Interdependence has widened the effective reach of multinational business. • It will be difficult. technology. and people throughout the world—as among an array of key drivers. “India and China probably will be among the economic heavyweights or ‘haves. and the reduction of conflicts. it will sustain world economic growth. Some features that we associate with the globalization of the 1990s—such as economic and political liberalization—are prone to “fits and starts” and probably will depend on progress in multilateral negotiations. Real-time communication.The Contradictions of Globalization Whereas in Global Trends 2015 we viewed globalization—growing interconnectedness reflected in the expanded flows of information. and consequently political convulsions. could be substantially slowed or even reversed. goods. and the worldwide information technology revolution. improvements in national governance. to turn off the phenomenon of entrenched economic interdependence. At the same time. just as the era of globalization in the late 19th and early 20th centuries was reversed by catastrophic war and global depression.
including New York and London. rising Asia may still accumulate large currency reserves—currently $850 billion in Japan. Korean pop singers are already the rage in Japan. including cutting-edge technology. perhaps. Even Hollywood has begun to reflect these Asian influences—an effect that is likely to accelerate through 2020. Japanese anime have many fans in China. At the same time. attaching fewer strings on currency swaps and giving Asian decision-makers more leeway from the “Washington macro-economic consensus. more firms becoming world-class multinationals. determining the relative size of the world’s greatest new “megacities” and. only a miniscule fraction of China’s 100 million internal migrants end up abroad—they could have major repercussions for other regions.What Would An Asian Face on Globalization Look Like? Rising Asia will continue to reshape globalization. Either way it will have a large impact. Asian finance ministers have considered establishing an Asian monetary fund that would operate along different lines from IMF. and possibly rupee probably will become standard practice. and Chinese kung-fu movies and Bollywood song-and-dance epics are viewed throughout Asia. giving it less of a “Made in the USA” character and more of an Asian look and feel.” • In terms of capital flows. • As governments devote more resources to basic research and development. An expanded Asian-centric cultural identity may be the most profound effect of a rising Asia. more Asian cultural identity is likely to be rapidly packaged and distributed as incomes rise and communications networks spread. and $120 billion in India. and the returns from Asian stock markets are likely to become an increasing global benchmark for portfolio managers. To the degree that these vast internal migrations spill over national borders—currently. Asia will alter the rules of the globalizing process. which should boost their high performance sectors. Interest-rate decisions taken by Asian central bankers will impact other global financial markets. A new. especially by China. By having the fastest-growing consumer markets. or collectively three-quarters of global reserves—but the percentage held in dollars will fall. $500 billion in China. We already anticipate (as stated in the text) that the Asian giants may use the power of their markets to set industry standards. act as a key variable for political stability/instability for decades to come. $190 billion in Korea. renminbi. will have enormous effects. Increased labor force participation in the global economy. India. Asia looks set to displace Western countries as the focus for international economic dynamism—provided Asia’s rapid economic growth continues. rather than adopting those promoted by Western nations or international standards bodies. Asians have already begun to reduce the percentage of students who travel to Europe and North America with Japan and—most striking—China becoming educational magnets. including Europe and North America. rising Asia will continue to attract applied technology from around the world. A basket of reserve currencies including the yen. and greater S&T stature. possibly spurring internal and regional migrations. 28 . The international intellectual property rights regime will be profoundly molded by IPR regulatory and law enforcement practices in East and South Asia. and Indonesia.
and Indonesia—and multinational companies from today’s advanced nations will adapt their “profiles” and business practices to the demands of these cultures. technologically. While today’s most advanced nations—especially the United States—will remain important forces driving capital. the benefits of globalization won’t be global. “…the world economy is projected to be about 80 percent larger in 2020 than it was in 2000. and average per capita income to be roughly 50 percent higher. An Expanding and Integrating Global Economy The world economy is projected to be about 80 percent larger in 2020 than it was in 2000 and average per capita income to be roughly 50 percent higher. Large parts of the world will enjoy unprecedented prosperity.Moreover. Countries that have benefited and are now in position to weigh in will seek more power in international bodies and greater influence on the “rules of the game. The conflation of globalization with US values has in turn fueled anti-Americanism in some parts of the world. corporations already are seeking to be “good citizens” by allowing the retention of non-Western practices in the workplaces in which they operate. many foreign experts have noted that while popular opinion in their countries favors the 29 material benefits of globalization. • Most of the increase in world population and consumer demand through 2020 will take place in today’s developing nations—especially China. about two-thirds of the world’s population live in countries that are connected to the global economy. and socially—and those underdeveloped nations or pockets within nations that are left behind.” In our interactions. The social structures in • • • • . the character of globalization probably will change just as capitalism changed over the course of the 19th and 20th centuries. Corporations are in the position to make globalization more palatable to people concerned about preserving unique cultures. India. gaps will widen between those countries benefiting from globalization—economically. Even by 2020. Over the next 15 years. however. globalization is likely to take on much more of a “non-Western face” over the next 15 years. citizens are opposed to its perceived “Americanization. Indeed.” which they see as threatening to their cultural and religious values. technology and goods. Able to disperse technology widely and promote economic progress in the developing world. and a numerically large middle class will be created for the first time in some formerly poor countries.” Currently. we see the next 15 years as a period in which the perceptions of the contradictions and uncertainties of a globalized world come even more to the fore than is the case today. New or expanding corporations from countries lifted up by globalization will make their presence felt globally through trade and investments abroad.
The economies of other developing countries. people. prompting governments to expend enormous resources on overwhelmed health sectors. by white collar rejection of outsourcing in the wealthy countries and/or resistance in poor countries whose peoples saw themselves as victims of globalization.What Could Derail Globalization? The process of globalization. the response to SARS showed that international surveillance and control mechanisms are becoming more adept at containing diseases. Given its enormous population— and assuming a reasonable degree of real currency appreciation—the dollar value of China’s gross national product (GNP) may be the second largest in the world by 2020. perhaps. such as the 1918–1919 influenza virus that killed an estimated 20 million worldwide. China. Border controls and restrictions on technology exchanges would increase economic transaction costs and hinder innovation and economic growth. those developing countries will be transformed as growth creates a greater middle class. Most forecasts to 2020 and beyond continue to show higher annual growth for developing countries than for high-income ones. Short of a major global conflict. Such a situation could come about in response to terrorist attacks killing tens or even hundreds of thousands in several US cities or in Europe or to widespread cyber attacks on information technology. which we regard as improbable. could be substantially slowed or even stopped. goods. other catastrophic developments. could slow its speed. and technology that stalled economic growth. On the positive side of the ledger. Some experts believe it is only a matter of time before a new pandemic appears. For similar reasons. . powerful as it is. for more traditionally poor countries to be pulled closer into the globalization circle. Such a pandemic in megacities of the developing world with poor health-care systems—in SubSaharan Africa. Globalization would be endangered if the death toll rose into the millions in several major countries and the spread of the disease put a halt to global travel and trade during an extended period. Other developments that could stimulate similar restrictive policies include a popular backlash against globalization prompted. India. whose aging work forces may inhibit their growth. so long as the expansion continues. there is the potential. another large-scale development that we believe could stop globalization would be a pandemic. Bangladesh or Pakistan—would be devastating and could spread rapidly throughout the world. and new developments in biotechnologies hold the promise of continued improvement. the value of India’s output could match that of a large European country. Countries such as China and India 30 will be in a position to achieve higher economic growth than Europe and Japan. Over a long time frame. such as terrorist attacks. However. A slow-down could result from a pervasive sense of economic and physical insecurity that led governments to put controls on the flow of capital.
and China and India may 31 4 Dreaming with the BRICS. their capital stocks will be less sophisticated. October 2003. and their financial systems are likely to be less efficient than those of other wealthy countries. could surpass all but the largest European economies by 2020. . and economic turbulence is increasingly likely to spill over and upset broader international relations. Asia’s “giants” and others are not likely to compare qualitatively to the economies of the US or even some of the other rich countries. Fast-developing countries have historically suffered sudden setbacks. and Japan. world-class sectors.4 • Even with all their dynamic growth. Continued Economic Turbulence. South Korea. but more of their populations will work on farms. Goldman Sachs study. Many emerging markets—such as Mexico in the mid-1990s and Asian countries in the late 1990s—suffered negative effects from the abrupt reversals of capital movements. however. and Taiwan have managed in the past to achieve annual rates averaging around 10 percent for a long period. They will have some dynamic. China already has had about two decades of 7 percent and higher growth rates. Sustained high-growth rates have historical precedents.such as Brazil and Indonesia.
” With the gradual integration of China. market. a more interrelated world labor 32 • Where these labor market pressures lead will depend on how political leaders and . trade. “Competitive pressures will force companies based in the advanced economies to ‘outsource’ many blue.encounter similar problems. hundreds of millions of working-age adults will join what is becoming. The scale of the potential reversals would be unprecedented. World patterns of production. competitive source of low-cost labor at the same time that technological innovation is expanding the range of globally mobile occupations. Competition from these workers will increase job “churning.” necessitate professional retooling. through trade and investment flows. and restrain wage growth in some occupations. and other developing countries into the global economy. and wages will be transformed. India.and white-collar jobs. employment. • This enormous work force—a growing portion of which will be well educated—will be an attractive. and it is unclear whether current international financial mechanisms would be in a position to forestall wider economic disruption.
000 annual income is considered sufficient to spur car purchases in Asia. however. Both the number of middle earners and their income levels are likely to rise rapidly. which is already evident. as one study estimates.000 a year. such resources could unleash widespread protectionist sentiments. Moreover. a $3. However. for example.000-$4. China’s middle class could make up as much as 40 percent of its population by 2020—double what it is Widening income and regional disparities will not be incompatible with a growing middle class and increasing overall wealth. now—it would be still well below the 60 percent level for the US. and the proportion of those in the middle stratum is likely to be significantly less than is the case for today’s developed nations. that SubSaharan Africa will be far behind even under the most optimistic scenario. Although the living standards of many people in developing and underdeveloped countries will rise over the next 15 years. per capita incomes in most countries will not compare to those of Western nations by 2020. • • Mobility and Laggards. Against the backdrop of a global economic recession. And per capita income for China’s middle class would be substantially less than equivalents in the West. The region currently has the largest 33 . for example. will likely exceed the supply of workers with those specific skills in the advanced economies. • Scenarios developed by the World Bank indicate. As long as sufficiently robust economic growth and labor market flexibility are sustained. • In India. and Orissa will remain underdeveloped. Uttar Pradesh. There will continue to be large numbers of poor even in the rapidly emerging economies. intense international competition is unlikely to cause net job “loss” in the advanced economies. Even the most optimistic forecasts admit that economic growth fueled by globalization will leave many countries in poverty over the next 15 years. but their incomes will continue to be substantially below averages in the US and other rich countries even by 2020. Job turnover in advanced economies will continue to be driven more by technological change and the vicissitudes of domestic rather than international competition. • The large number of new service sector jobs that will be created in India and elsewhere in the developing world. a number of regions such as Bihar. In India. there are now estimated to be some 300 million middle-income earners making $2. thus rapidly rising income levels for a growing middle class will combine to mean a huge consumption explosion. • Even if. countries not connected to the world economy will continue to suffer. Experts estimate it could take China another 30 years beyond 2020 for per capita incomes to reach current rates in developed economies. although much of the west and south may have a large middle class by 2020.policymakers respond.
and Latin America persists. and even social and political relationships. Such interactions of these technology trends— coupled with agile manufacturing methods and equipment as well as energy. applications that improve food and potable water production. • Among the drivers of the growing availability of technology will be the growing two-way flow of high-tech brain power between developing countries and Western countries. Materials enabled with nanotechnology’s sensors and facilitated by information technology will produce myriad devices that will enhance health and alter business practices and models. To Adaptive Nations Go Technology ‘s Spoils. New technology applications will foster dramatic improvements in human knowledge and individual well-being. The international community is likely to face choices about whether. biological. The gulf between “haves” and “have-nots” may widen as the greatest benefits of globalization accrue to countries and groups that can access and 34 “…the greatest benefits of globalization will accrue to countries and groups that can access and adopt new technologies. Eurasia.” Both countries are investing in basic research in these fields and are well placed to be leaders in a number of key fields. If the growing problem of abject poverty and bad governance in troubled states in Sub-Saharan Africa. organized crime. The United States is still in a position to retain its overall lead. the Middle East. Moreover. Europe risks slipping behind Asia in creating some of these technologies. future technology trends will be marked not only by accelerating advancements in individual technologies but also by a force-multiplying convergence of the technologies— information. how. and transportation technologies—will help China’s and India’s prospects for joining the “First World. these areas will become more fertile grounds for terrorism. Such materials will provide new knowledge about environment. the increasing size of the technologically literate workforce in some developing countries. materials. improve security.” The Technology Revolution The trend toward rapid. global diffusion of technology will continue. and expansion of wireless communications and language translation technologies that will facilitate transnational business. and at what cost to intervene. and reduce privacy.share of people living on less than $1 per day. Forced migration also is likely to be an important dimension of any downward spiral. and nanotechnologies—that have the potential to revolutionize all dimensions of life. although the stepped-up technology revolution will not benefit everyone equally. Such benefits include medical breakthroughs that begin to cure or . and efforts by multinational corporations to diversify their hightech operations. and pandemic disease. water. although it must increasingly compete with Asia and may lose significant ground in some sectors. mitigate some common diseases and stretch lifespans. commercial.
Additionally. The attractiveness of these large markets will tempt multinational firms to overlook IPR indiscretions that only minimally affect their bottom lines. Those that employ such policies can leapfrog stages of development. computing. because of the purchasing power of their huge markets. and market reforms—and not solely because they are poor. joint ventures. a nation’s level of technological achievement generally will be defined in terms of its investment in integrating and applying the new. skipping over phases that other high-tech leaders such as the United States and Europe had to traverse in order to advance. control. information security. Moreover. • Indeed. cheap technologies to fuel—although at a slower rate—their own development. • Questions concerning a country’s ethical practices in the technology realm—such as with genetically modified foods. research. data privacy. globally available technologies—whether the technologies are acquired through a country’s own basic research or from technology leaders. universal education. biological material research. and materials.adopt new technologies. such as sensors. communication. Countries like China and India will. as many of the expected advancements in technology are anticipated to be in medicine. Rapid technological advances outside the United States could enable other countries to set the rules for design.” Nations also will face serious challenges in oversight. Indeed. standards. Nations that remain behind in adopting technologies are likely to be those that have failed to pursue policies that support application of new technologies—such as good governance. and intellectual property rights (IPR). • As nations like China and India surge forward in funding critical science and engineering education. there will be increasing pressure from a humanitarian and moral perspective to “release” the property rights “for the good of mankind. and for molding privacy. 35 . concealable sensors. With the same technology. and implementation. they will make considerable strides in manufacturing and marketing a full range of technology applications— from software and pharmaceuticals to wireless sensors and smart-materials products. even the poorest countries will be able to leverage prolific. China and India are well positioned to achieve such breakthroughs. international IPR enforcement is on course for dramatic change. be able to shape the implementation of some technologies and step on the intellectual property rights of others. Yet. increasingly being developed for a range of applications in both everyday. and biometric devices—may become an increasingly important factor in international trade policy and foreign relations. commercial settings and in critical military applications the monitoring and control of the export of technological components will become more difficult. and prohibition of sensitive technologies. globalized markets and the growing proportion of private sector capital in basic R&D will undermine nation-state efforts to keep tabs on sensitive technologies. and other infrastructure investments.
stopping the progress of offensive BW programs will become increasingly difficult. An attacker would appear to have an easier job—because of the large array of possibilities available—than the defender. environmental remediation. As biotechnology information becomes more widely available. Research will continue to foster important discoveries in innovative medical and public health technologies. or anti-social behavior. certain cognitive abilities. stem cell research. animal. the number of people who can potentially misuse such information and wreak widespread loss of life will increase. 36 . helping to resolve the ongoing humanitarian crisis in SubSaharan Africa and diminishing the potentially serious drag on economic growth in developing countries like India and China. some biotechnology techniques that may facilitate major improvements in health also will spur serious ethical and privacy concerns over such matters as comprehensive genetic profiling. Lastly.Biotechnology: Panacea and Weapon The biotechnological revolution is at a relatively early stage. biotechnology could be a “leveling” agent between developed and developing nations. it also poses a major security concern. spreading dramatic economic and healthcare enhancements to the neediest areas of the world. biodefense. agriculture. • However. More developing countries probably will invest in indigenous biotechnology developments. or crop. Moreover. and major advances in the biological sciences coupled with information technology will continue to punctuate the 21st century. and the possibility of discovering DNA signatures that indicate predisposition for disease. Biotechnology research and innovations derived from continued US investments in Homeland Security—such as new therapies that might block a pathogen’s ability to enter the body—may eventually have revolutionary healthcare applications that extend beyond protecting the US from a terrorist attack. • Possible breakthroughs in biomedicine such as an antiviral barrier will reduce the spread of HIV/AIDS. who must prepare against them all. while competitive market pressures increasingly will induce firms and research institutions to seek technically capable partners in developing countries. On the positive side. and related fields. Over the next 10 to 20 years there is a risk that advances in biotechnology will augment not only defensive measures but also offensive biological warfare (BW) agent development and allow the creation of advanced biological agents designed to target specific systems—human. as biotechnology advances become more ubiquitous. even as the dispersion of biotechnology promises a means of improving the quality of life.
At the same time. Central Asian states. according to UNESCO. particularly those in Sub-Saharan Africa. China. by US Census Bureau projections. technology will be a source of tension in 2020: from competition over creating and attracting the most critical component of technological advancement—people—to resistance among some cultural or political groups to the perceived privacyrobbing or homogenizing effects of pervasive technology. However. illiteracy rates of people 15 years and older will fall. an outgrowth of the Marshall Planera Organization for European Economic Cooperation. this probably will continue to be the case for many developing countries. including the most populous. Studies show that household incomes drop by 50 to 80 percent when key earners become infected. and Russia—are projected to have a lower life expectancy in 2010 than they did in 1990. and the situation is certain to worsen. In “second wave” HIV/AIDS countries—Nigeria. As HIV/AIDS spreads. The debilitation and death of millions of people resulting from the AIDS pandemic will have a growing impact on the economies of the hardest-hit countries. Today in some African countries one in ten children is an orphan. Lingering Social Inequalities Even with the potential for technological breakthroughs and the dispersion of new technologies. Brazil. and the Central Asian states—the disease will continue to spread beyond traditional high-risk groups into the general population. Russia. • The rapid rise in adult deaths caused by AIDS has left an unprecedented number of orphans in Africa. but they will still be 17 times higher in poor and developing countries than those in OECD5 countries. Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Moreover. boasts 30 members from among developed and emerging-market nations and active relationships with 70 others around the world. illiteracy rates among women will be almost twice as high as those among men. where more than 20 million are believed to have died from HIV/AIDS since the early 1980s. which could help reduce inequalities. Between 1950 and 1980 life expectancy between the more.and less-developed nations began to converge markedly. Ethiopia. the social and economic impact of the millions already infected with the disease will play out over the next 15 years. 37 . Over the next 15 years. it has the potential to derail the economic prospects of many up-and-coming economic powers. significant social welfare disparities within the developing and between developing and OECD countries will remain until 2020. Ukraine. over 40 countries— including many African countries. India. Even if effective HIV/AIDS prevention measures are adopted in various countries. 5 The OECD.
boys are likely to be given first priority.The Status of Women in 2020 By 2020. many younger Muslims recognize the importance of educated wives as potential contributors to family income. women continue to receive less pay than men. women face increased risk not only of female infanticide but also of kidnapping and smuggling from surrounding regions for the disproportionately greater number of unattached males. Yet views are changing among the younger generation. Thus far. where there is a pervasive “son preference” reinforced by government population control policies. political participation. The feminization of HIV/AIDS is another worrisome trend. making it the second most profitable criminal activity behind global drug trafficking. Such statistics suggest that the global female trafficking industry. Factors Impeding Equality In regions where high youth bulges intersect with historical patterns of patriarchal bias. In the Middle East. which already earns an estimated $4 billion every year. • Although the difference between women’s and men’s earnings narrowed during the past 10 years. Findings from the July 2004 Global AIDS conference held in Bangkok reveal that the percentage of HIV-infected women is rising on every continent and in every major region in the world except Western Europe and Australia. wage gaps and regional disparities will persist. a UN study in 2002 showed that in 27 of 39 countries surveyed—both in OECD and developing countries—women’s wages were 20 to 50 percent less than men’s for work in manufacturing. but UN and World Health Organization data suggest that the gender gap will not have been closed even in the developed countries and still will be wide in developing regions. Although women’s share in the global work force will continue to rise. and work force equality—in most parts of the world. for example. In countries such as China and India. the added pressure on infrastructure will mean intensified competition for limited public resources and an increased probability that females will not receive equal treatment. Certain factors will tend to work against gender equality while others will have a positive impact. women will have gained more rights and freedoms—in terms of education. For example. (Continued on next page…) 38 . Young women comprise 75 percent of those between the ages of 15 to 24 who are infected with HIV globally. the preference for male children in China has led to an estimated shortfall of 30 million women. is likely to expand. For instance. if schools cannot educate all.
The current trend toward decentralization and devolution of power in most states will afford women increased opportunities for political participation. 39 . Women in developing regions often turn to nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) to provide basic services. NGOs could become even more important to the status of women by 2020 as women in developing countries face increased threats and acquire IT networking capabilities. • By 2005.(continued…) The Status of Women in 2020 Factors Contributing to Equality A broader reform agenda that includes good governance and low unemployment levels is essential to raising the status of women in many countries. Reducing unemployment levels is crucial because countries already unable to provide employment for male job-seekers are not likely to improve employment opportunities for women. The spread of information and communication technologies (ICT) offers great promise. it must deliver stability through inclusiveness and accountability. increases in the level of ICT infrastructure tend to improve gender equality in education and employment. particularly in the Middle East. International development experts emphasize that while good governance need not fit a Western democratic mold. For regions suffering political oppression. UN leaders pledged to achieve gender equity in primary and secondary education by the year 2005 in every country of the world. ICT also will enable women to form social and political networks. Other Benefits The stakes for achieving gender parity are high and not just for women. the 45 countries that are not on course to meet the UN targets are likely to suffer 1 to 3 percent lower GDP per capita growth as a result. these networks could become a 21st century counterpart to the 1980s’ Solidarity Movement against the Communist regime in Poland. At the Millennium Summit. A growing body of empirical literature suggests that gender equality in education promotes economic growth and reduces child mortality and malnutrition. According to World Bank analysis. Despite only modest gains in the number of female officeholders at the national level—women currently are heads of state in only eight countries—female participation in local and provincial politics is steadily rising and will especially benefit rural women removed from the political center of a country.
growing tensions over Taiwan may be on the verge of triggering an economic meltdown.Fictional Scenario: Davos World This scenario provides an illustration of how robust economic growth over the next 15 years could reshape the globalization process—giving it a more non-Western face. we identify some lessons to be drawn from our fictional account. At the end of the scenario. Although benefiting from energy price increases. but some founder. 40 . Many boats are lifted. have to contend with job insecurity despite the many benefits to be derived from an expanding global economy. including the United States. In addition. and their huge. It is depicted in the form of a hypothetical letter from the head of the World Economic Forum to a former US Federal Reserve chairman on the eve of the annual Davos meeting in 2020. Africa does better than one might think. the Middle East lags behind and threatens the future of globalization. including the need for more management by leaders lest globalization slip off the rails. Under this scenario. consumerdriven domestic markets become a major focus for global business and technology. the Asian giants as well as other developing states continue to outpace most “Western” economies. while some mediumsized emerging countries are squeezed. Western powers.
4 billion and almost 1. China. led by China and India. • • • • 6 CIA. Yet how China and India exercise their growing power and whether they relate cooperatively or competitively to other powers in the international system are key uncertainties. expanding military capabilities. • Because of the sheer size of China’s and India’s populations—projected by the US Census Bureau to be 1. Only an abrupt reversal of the process of globalization or a major upheaval in these countries would prevent their rise. and large populations will be at the root of the expected rapid rise in economic and political power for both countries. not only in share of manufacturing but also of the world’s exports. • The population of the region that served as the locus for most 20thcentury history—Europe and Russia— will decline dramatically in relative terms. and perhaps others such as Brazil and Indonesia—could usher in a new set of international alignments.6 The “arriviste” powers—China. with impacts potentially as dramatic as those of the previous two centuries. almost all population growth will occur in developing nations that until recently have occupied places on the fringes of the global economy (see graphic on page 48). India currently lags behind China (see box on page 53) on most economic measures. but most economists believe it also will sustain high levels of economic growth. come into their own. 47 . for example. July 2001. potentially marking a definitive break with some of the post-World War II institutions and practices. A combination of sustained high economic growth. India. Competition from “the China price” already powerfully restrains manufactures prices worldwide. active promotion of high technologies.Rising Powers: The Changing Geopolitical Landscape The likely emergence of China and India as new major global players—similar to the rise of Germany in the 19th century and the United States in the early 20th century—will transform the geopolitical landscape. its share having risen from four to 12 percent in the past decade.3 billion respectively by 2020—their standard of living need not approach Western levels for these countries to become important economic powers. In the same way that commentators refer to the 1900s as the “American Century. Long-Term Global Demographic Trends: Reshaping the Geopolitical Landscape. is now the third largest producer of manufactured goods.” the early 21st century may be seen as the time when some in the developing world. It should easily surpass Japan in a few years.
Rising Asia China’s desire to gain “great power” status on the world stage will be reflected in its greater economic leverage over 48 . Finally.At the same time. Japan. The growing demand for energy will drive many of these likely changes on the geopolitical landscape. other changes are likely to shape the new landscape. and Russia will be hard pressed to deal with aging populations. while Europe and Russia’s co-dependency is likely to be strengthened. more united Europe and a more internationally activist Japan. and even Russia— which may reinforce the growing role of China and India even though by themselves these other countries would have more limited geopolitical impact. although Europe. These include the possible economic rise of other states—such as Brazil. we do not discount the possibility of a stronger. Indonesia. China’s and India’s perceived need to secure access to energy supplies will propel these countries to become more global rather than just regional powers. South Africa.
crime. and its rise will have an impact not only in Asia but also to the north—Central Asia. also may try to appeal to each other and the United States to counterbalance China’s growing influence. East Asian states are adapting to the advent of a more powerful China by forging closer economic and political ties with Beijing. India will be an economic magnet for the region. and various Southeast Asian nations. regional security would weaken. and illegal migration.countries in the region and elsewhere as well as its steps to strengthen its military. Iran. Taiwan. ” The rise of India also will present strategic complications for the region. 49 . including advanced fighter aircraft. particularly on sensitive issues like Taiwan. • Japan. Beijing’s failure to maintain its economic growth would itself have a global impact. • Faced with a rapidly aging society beginning in the 2020s. however. narcotics trafficking. It is unlikely to have developed by then the same coping mechanisms—such as sophisticated pension and health-care systems—characteristic of Western societies. resulting in heightened prospects for political instability. Like China. including in such organizations as the World Trade Organization (WTO). China will overtake Russia and others as the second largest defense spender after the United States over the next two decades and will be. • Chinese Government failure to satisfy popular needs for job creation could trigger political unrest. If China’s economy takes a downward turn. India seeks to bolster regional cooperation both for strategic reasons and because of its desire to increase its leverage with the West. however. sophisticated submarines. and increasing numbers of ballistic missiles. and other countries of the Middle East. by any measure. China may be hard pressed to deal with all the issues linked to such serious demographic problems. potentially accommodating themselves to its preferences. a first-rate military power. Economic setbacks and crises of confidence could slow China’s emergence as a full-scale great power. • China will continue to strengthen its military through developing and acquiring modern weapons. “Economic setbacks and crises of confidence could slow China’s emergence as a full-scale great power….
but they appear unlikely to become such economic engines that they will be able to alter the flow of economic power within and through their Just like China. Thailand. and South Africa also are poised to achieve economic growth.As India’s economy grows. Their growth undoubtedly will benefit their neighbors. Indonesia. Other Rising States? Brazil. Russia. India will seek to strengthen its ties with countries in the region without excluding China. India will face stark choices as its population increases and its surface and ground water become even more polluted. and energy supplies— intensifying as it modernizes. For example.6 billion. water. and other countries—may move closer to India to help build a potential geopolitical counterweight to China. India may stumble and experience political and economic volatility with pressure on resources— 51 . • Chinese-Indian bilateral trade is expected to rise rapidly from its current small base of $7. although they are unlikely to exercise the same political clout as China or India. land. At the same time. governments in Southeast Asia—Malaysia. Singapore. according to Goldman Sachs and other experts.
• The study assessed the probability that none of these developments would occur before 2015 as low and noted that they would be more likely to occur in clusters rather than individually – financial distress.8 and 2. In 2003. poverty. the RAND Corporation identified and assessed eight major risks to the continued rapid growth of China’s economy over the next decade. and social unrest Energy consumption and prices Taiwan and other potential conflicts RAND’s estimates of the negative growth impact of these adverse developments occurring separately on a one-at-a-time basis range from a low of between 0. • 52 .4 and 10. would also worsen corruption. social unrest. Its “Fault Lines in China’s Economic Terrain” highlighted: • • • • • • • • Fragility of the financial system and state-owned enterprises Economic effects of corruption Water resources and pollution Possible shrinkage of foreign direct investment HIV/AIDS and epidemic diseases Unemployment. and unemployment to a high of between 1.3 and 0. and reduce foreign direct investment. compound unemployment. for example. poverty.7 percentage points—effectively wiping out growth during that time frame. and social unrest. RAND assessed the probability of all of these adverse developments occurring before 2015 as very low but estimated that should they all occur their cumulative effect would be to reduce Chinese economic growth by between 7.8 percentage points for the effects of poverty.2 percentage points for epidemic disease.Risks to Chinese Economic Growth Whether China’s rise occurs smoothly is a key uncertainty.
amount of foreign investment (today a small fraction of China’s). Both also face a potentially serious HIV/AIDS epidemic that could seriously affect economic prospects if not brought under control. whereas China faces the continuous challenge of reconciling an increasingly urban and middle-class population with an essentially authoritarian political system. including the large numbers. 53 . In recent years. both China and India still resemble other developing states in the problems each must overcome.India vs. especially the risks to political stability and the challenges facing China’s financial sector as it moves toward a fuller market orientation. according to most measures such as overall GDP. India possesses working capital markets and world-class firms in some important hightech sectors. India has several factors working for it: • • Its working-age population will continue to increase well into the 2020s. Several factors could weaken China’s prospects for economic growth. and per capita income. India has overtaken South Africa as the country with the largest number of HIV-infected people. In many other respects. which China has yet to achieve. should China’s growth slow by several percentage points. and the 2002 “pogrom” against the Muslim minority in Gujarat as evidence of a worsening trend. Nevertheless. whereas. • On the other hand. who have not enjoyed major benefits from economic growth. China might find its own path toward an “Asian democracy” that may not involve major instability or disruption to its economic growth—but there are a large number of unknowns. The country is not yet attractive for foreign investment and faces strong political challenges as it continues down the path of economic reform. due to the one-child policy.” the legacy of a stifling bureaucracy still remains. while India has clearly evolved beyond what the Indians themselves referred to as the 2-3 percent “Hindu growth rate. In addition. India is also faced with the burden of having a much larger proportion of its population in desperate poverty. some observers see communal tensions just below the surface. China’s will diminish and age quite rapidly. growth of regional and caste-based political parties. making it somewhat less vulnerable to political instability. China: Long-Term Prospects India lags economically behind China. The bottom line: India would be hard-pressed to accelerate economic growth rates to levels above those reached by China in the past decade. But China’s ability to sustain its current pace is probably more at risk than is India’s. India could emerge as the world’s fastest-growing economy as we head towards 2020. India has well-entrenched democratic institutions. particularly in rural areas. citing the overall decline of secularism. some experts believe that India might overtake China as the fastest growing economy in the world. India’s growth rate has lagged China’s by about 20 percent. According to recent UN data.
Experts acknowledge that Brazil is a pivotal state with a vibrant democracy. Indonesia is an amalgam of divergent ethnic and religious groups. Although an Indonesian national identity has been forged in the five decades since independence. in the complex world of 2020 Russia could be an important. Luring foreign direct investment and advancing regional stability and equitable integration—including trade and economic infrastructure—probably will remain axioms of Brazilian foreign policy. partner both for the established powers. such as the United States and Europe. and solid economic institutions. Inside Russia. but Russia faces a severe demographic challenge resulting from low birth rates. the autonomous republics in North Caucasus risk failure and will remain a source of endemic tension and conflict. The problems along its southern borders—including Islamic extremism. and a potentially explosive AIDS situation. weak states with poor governance. if troubled. While these social and political factors limit the extent to which Russia can be a major global player. With slower growth its economy would be unable to absorb the unemployed or under-employed labor force. US Census Bureau projections show the working-age population likely to shrink dramatically by 2020. which along with its expected increase in its relatively large population from 226 to around 250 million would make it one of the largest developing economies. Such high growth would presume an improved investment environment. thus heightening the risk of greater political instability. 54 . and conflict—are likely to get worse over the next 15 years. a diversified economy and an entrepreneurial population. terrorism. Russia’s present trajectory away from pluralism toward bureaucratic authoritarianism also decreases the chances it will be able to attract foreign investment outside the energy sector. limiting prospects for diversifying its economy. Brazil is a natural partner both for the United States and Europe and for rising powers China and India and has the potential to enhance its leverage as a net exporter of oil.regions—a key element in Beijing and New Delhi’s political and economic rise. poor medical care. including intellectual property rights protection and openness to foreign investment. Russia’s energy resources will give a boost to economic growth. the government is still beset by stubborn secessionist movements. a large national patrimony. and the rising powers of China and India. Brazil’s success or failure in balancing pro-growth economic measures with an ambitious social agenda that reduces poverty and income inequality will have a profound impact on regionwide economic performance and governance during the next 15 years. Experts assess that over the course of the next decade and a half Indonesia may revert to high growth of 6 to 7 percent. The potential also exists for Russia to enhance its leverage with others as a result of its position as a major oil and gas exporter.
while at least some states in the South may lag economically and will continue to face deep ethnic and religious cleavages. The experts also felt that demographic factors will play a key role in shaping regional developments. violence within Southeast Asian states—in the form of separatist insurgencies and terrorism—could intensify. and the US—will undergo significant change by 2020.Asia: The Cockpit for Global Change? According to the regional experts we consulted. and parts of The Philippines. and Southeast Asia. At the same time. China also will have to face the consequences of a gender imbalance caused by its one-child policy. where Islamic fundamentalism may increasingly make inroads in such states as Indonesia. As Northeast Asia acts as a political and economic center of gravity for the countries of the South. The United States and China have strong incentives to avoid confrontation. which will adapt to the continuing spread of globalization. including South Korea. 55 . In their view. the Korean Peninsula and Taiwan Strait crises are likely to come to a head by 2020. China and other countries in Northeast Asia. but rising nationalism in China and fears in the US of China as an emerging strategic competitor could fuel an increasingly antagonistic relationship. Population and poverty pressures will spur migration within the region and to Northeast Asia. Northeast and Southeast Asia will progress along divergent paths—the countries of the North will become wealthier and more powerful. Japan. Finally. risking conflict with global repercussions. Japan’s relationship with the US and China will be shaped by China’s rise and the nature of any settlement on the Korean Peninsula and over Taiwan. High population concentrations and increasing ease of travel will facilitate the spread of infectious diseases. In Southeast Asian countries such as The Philippines and Indonesia. The diversion of investment towards China and India also could spur Southeast Asia to implement plans for a single economic community and investment area by 2020. Asia will exemplify most of the trends that we see as shaping the world over the next 15 years. risking the outbreak of pandemics. will experience a slowing of population growth and a “graying” of their peoples over the next 15 years. The regional experts felt that the possibility of major inter-state conflict remains higher in Asia than in other regions. the roles of and interaction between the region’s major powers—China. The North/South divisions are likely to be reflected in a cultural split between non-Muslim Northeast Asia. China also could face sustained armed unrest from separatist movements along its western borders. Malaysia. parts of Southeast Asia will be a source of transnational threats—terrorism and organized crime—to the countries of the North. rising populations will challenge the capacity of governments to provide basic services.
Asia’s Shifting Strategic Landscape. a resurgence or lack of continued vitality in Japan’s economy. but Russia faces a severe demographic challenge…[with its] working-age population likely to shrink dramatically. stable democratic governments. South African experts adept at scenario-building and gaming see the country’s future as lying with partnerships formed outside the region.” South Africa will continue to be challenged by AIDS and widespread crime and poverty. Experts disagree over whether South Africa can be an engine for more than southern Africa or will instead forge closer relationships with middling or up-and-coming powers on other continents. Opinion polls indicate growing public support for Japan becoming a more “normal” country with a proactive foreign policy. “…Europe’s strength may be in providing… a model of global and regional governance to the rising powers…” By most measures—market size. If anything. Its crossroads location and the growing diversity of its population—particularly in pulling in new members—provides it with a unique ability to forge strong bonds both to the south with the Muslim world and Africa and to the east with Russia and Eurasia. Japanese concerns regarding regional stability are likely to grow owing to the ongoing crisis over North Korea. the level of US influence in the region and how developments in Korea and Taiwan play out. growing Chinese economic power is likely to spur increased activism by Japan on the world stage. 26 November 2003. especially China7. South Africa’s economy is projected to grow over the next decade in the 4. continuing tensions between China and Taiwan and the challenge of integrating rising China and India without major disruption. and GDP—an enlarged Europe will have the ability to increase its weight on the international scene. Japan may have to choose between “balancing” against or “bandwagoning” with China. At some point. 7 56 . Foreign Policy Research Institute. At the same time. for example. but prospects for its economy—the largest in the region—look promising. highly skilled work force. single currency. According to some forecasts. The “Aging” Powers Japan’s economic interests in Asia have shifted from Southeast Asia toward Northeast Asia—especially China and the China-Japan-Korea triangle—over the past two decades and experts believe the aging of Japan’s work force will reinforce dependence on outbound investment and greater economic integration with Northeast Asia.to 5-percent range if reformist policies are implemented. Experts see various trajectories that Japan could follow depending on such factors as the extent of China’s growing strength. unified trade bloc.“Russia’s energy resources will give a boost to economic growth.
taking in ten new east European members probably will be a “drag” on the deepening of European Union (EU) institutions necessary for the development of a cohesive and shared “strategic vision” for the EU’s foreign and security policy. historically have had difficulties in coordinating and rationalizing defense spending in such a way as to boost capabilities despite progress on a greater EU security and defense role. though still unlikely. • Unlike the expansion when Ireland. Europe’s strength may be in providing. Spain. in part because its creation could duplicate or displace NATO forces. While its military forces have little capacity for power projection. Portugal and Greece joined the Common Market in the 1970s and early 1980s.1 replacement level. education. provided that mutual acceptance and agreement can be achieved. a model of global and regional governance to the rising powers. Possible Turkish membership presents both challenges—because of Turkey’s size and religious and cultural differences—as well as opportunities. For example. Aging populations and shrinking work forces in most countries will have an important impact on the continent. Collectively these countries will outspend all others except the US and possibly China8. particularly if they are searching for a “Western” alternative to strong reliance on the United States. Brussels has a fraction of the structural funds available for quickly bringing up the Central Europeans to the economic levels of the rest of the EU. an EU-China alliance. Europe’s total fertility rate is about 1. In the short term. is no longer unthinkable. In working through the problems. and Germany is likely to fall further behind China and other countries over the next 15 years. Either European countries adapt their work forces. Whether the EU will develop an army is an open question.4— well below the 2. March 2003. Over the next 15 years. a path might be found that can help Europe to accommodate and integrate its growing Muslim population.The extent to which Europe enhances its clout on the world stage depends on its ability to achieve greater political cohesion. including the UK. Joint Doctrine and Concepts Centre. EU member states Strategic Trends. reform their social welfare. creating a serious but not insurmountable economic and political challenge. through its commitment to multilateralism. and tax systems. • Defense spending by individual European countries. France. and accommodate growing immigrant populations (chiefly from Muslim countries) or they face a period of protracted economic stasis that could threaten the huge successes made in creating a more United Europe. 8 57 . West European economies will need to find several million workers to fill positions vacated by retiring workers.
Russia. 9 Nicholas Eberstadt. “Four Surprises in Global Demography. and Japan.1 children per woman necessary to maintain long-term population stability. Algeria. about half of the world’s population lives in countries or territories whose fertility rates are not sufficient to replace their current populations.9 China is a special case where the transition to an aging population—nearly 400 million Chinese will be over 65 by 2020—is particularly abrupt and the emergence of a serious gender imbalance could have increasing political. Most experts do not expect the current. An unfunded nationwide pension arrangement means many Chinese may have to continue to work into old age. North America. Russia and Japan and probably will become a more important feature of the world of 2020. Indeed. and Lebanon. including Arab and Muslim states such as Turkey. Recipient countries face the challenge of integrating new immigrants so as to minimize potential social conflict. Some economists believe remittances are greater than foreign direct investment in most poor countries and in some cases are more valuable than exports. Vol 5.” Foreign Policy Research Institute’s Watch on the West. Tunisia. pronounced trend of “brain drain” from the Middle East and Africa to diminish. even if many of the migrants do not have legal status. but also most parts of developed regions such as Australia. Certain countries in the developing world. Hong Kong. Number 5. where the problem is particularly severe. • Remittances from migrant workers are increasingly important to developing economies. social. Migration has the potential to help solve the problem of a declining work force in Europe and. also are dropping below the level of 2. and even international repercussions. July 2004. it could increase with the expected growth of employment opportunities. 58 .Global Aging and Migration According to US Census Bureau projections. Taiwan. This includes not only Europe. However. and East Asian countries like Singapore. particularly in Europe. to a lesser degree. New Zealand. and South Korea. today one-half of Nigerian-born medical doctors and PhDs reside in the United States.
While Russia. solar. total energy consumed probably will rise by about 50 percent in the next two decades compared to a 34 percent expansion from 1980–2000. with an increasing share provided by petroleum. overall energy supplies will be sufficient to meet growing global demand. and India all plan expansions of their nuclear power sector. particularly that of China and India. The International Energy Agency assesses that with substantial investment in new capacity. • Renewable energy sources such as hydrogen. nuclear power probably will decline globally in absolute terms in the next decade. The single most important factor affecting the demand for energy will be global economic growth.Growing Demands for Energy Growing demands for energy— especially by the rising powers—through 2020 will have substantial impacts on geopolitical relations. China. • Despite the trend toward more efficient energy use. Continued 59 . and wind energy probably will account for only about 8 percent of the energy supply in 2020.
Encouraging the “younger elderly” (50-65 year olds) to work longer or return to the work force also would help ease labor shortages. undermining its ambitions to play a heavyweight international role. as shown in Sweden’s successful example of providing more flexibility for businesses while conserving many worker rights. 61 . If no changes were implemented Europe could experience a further overall slowdown. for example—successfully assimilating millions of new Muslim migrant workers in a short period of time. disintegration of the European Union. multidimensional approach including: • More legal immigration and better integration of workers likely to be coming mainly from North Africa and the Middle East. Experts are dubious that the present political leadership is prepared to make even this partial break.Could Europe Become A Superpower? According to the regional experts we consulted. Europe’s future international role depends greatly on whether it undertakes major structural economic and social reforms to deal with its aging work-force problem. many experts believe the EU has to continue streamlining the complicated decision-making process that hinders collective action. such as encouraging young women to take a few years off to start families in return for guarantees of reentry. believing a looming budgetary crisis in the next five years would be the more likely trigger for reform. Doing just enough to keep growth rates at one or two percent may result in some expansion. A federal Europe—unlikely in the 2020 timeframe—is not necessary to enable it to play a weightier international role so long as it can begin to mobilize resources and fuse divergent views into collective policy goals. Experts believe an economic “leap forward”—stirring renewed confidence and enthusiasm in the European project—could trigger such enhanced international action. In addition to the need for increased economic growth and social and welfare reform. • The experts felt that the current welfare state is unsustainable and the lack of any economic revitalization could lead to the splintering or. enlargement is likely to stop with current members. at worst. particularly on foreign policy. The demographic picture will require a concerted. but Europe probably would not be able to play a major international role commensurate with its size. Even if more guest workers are not allowed in. it is harder to see a country— Germany. Increased flexibility in the workplace. The experts believe that the EU’s economic growth rate is dragged down by Germany and its restrictive labor laws. Barring increased legal entry may only lead to more illegal migrants who will be harder to integrate. In such a scenario. Structural reforms there—and in France and Italy to lesser extents— remain key to whether the EU as a whole can break out of its slow-growth pattern. and individual countries might go their own way. Western Europe will have to integrate a growing Muslim population. making accession unlikely for Turkey and the Balkan countries. A total break from the post-World War II welfare state model may not be necessary. not to mention long-term possibilities such as Russia or Ukraine. even if they remained nominal members. posing a longterm problem. It is possible to imagine European nations successfully adapting their work forces and social welfare systems to these new realities.
and gas-toliquids technology is unlikely to change these ratios substantially by 2020. In trying to maximize and diversify its energy supplies. Europe’s energy needs are unlikely to grow to the same extent as those of the developing world. unlike oil. Traditional suppliers in the Middle East are also increasingly unstable. perhaps accompanied by a major disruption of oil supplies. • • • 62 . Gas. • More than 95 percent of gas produced and three quarters of gas traded is distributed via pipelines directly from supplier to consumer. Indonesia. Europe will have access to supplies in Russia and North Africa while China will be able to draw from eastern Russia. Beijing’s growing energy requirements are likely to prompt China to increase its activist role in the world—in the Middle East. which lack adequate domestic energy resources. For more than ten years Chinese officials have openly asserted that production from Chinese firms The Geopolitics of Gas. and potentially huge deposits in Australia. but the relationship between gas suppliers and consumers is likely to be particularly strong because of the restrictions on delivery mechanisms. and the interdependency of pipeline delivery— producers must be connected to consumers. Africa. West Africa and South China Sea—that are being counted on to provide increased output involve substantial political or economic risk. and Eurasia. investing overseas is more secure than imports purchased on the international market. Both oil and gas suppliers will have greater leverage than today. China worries about being vulnerable to pressure from the United States which Chinese officials see as having an aggressive energy policy that can be used against Beijing. the need for energy will be a major factor in shaping their foreign and defense policies. • Experts believe China will need to boost its energy consumption by about 150 percent and India will need to nearly double its consumption by 2020 to maintain a steady rate of economic growth. is not yet a fungible source of energy. thus. The United States will look almost exclusively to Canada and other western hemisphere suppliers. however. and many of the areas—the Caspian Sea. and South America in order to secure more reliable access. will have to ensure continued access to outside suppliers. Chinese firms are being directed to invest in projects in the Caspian region. Venezuela. Thus sharper demand-driven competition for resources. is among the key uncertainties. and typically neither group has many alternatives—reinforces regional alliances.limited access of the international oil companies to major fields could restrain this investment. including expanding naval power. China and India. Latin America. in part because of Europe’s expected lower economic growth and more efficient use of energy. Russia. the Middle East.
We expect that countries will pursue strategies designed to exclude or isolate the US—perhaps 63 . militarily. and technologically. moreover. including resistance to support for US interests in multinational forums and development of asymmetric military capabilities as a hedge against the US. “There are few policy-relevant theories to indicate how states are likely to deal with a situation in which the US continues to be the single most powerful actor economically. Russia. as gas requires a higher level of political commitment by both sides in designing and constructing the necessary infrastructure. will be well positioned to marshal its oil and gas reserves to support domestic and foreign policy objectives. US Unipolarity—How Long Can It Last? A world with a single superpower is unique in modern times. believe the US is bent on regional domination—or direct political and economic domination of other states and their resources. US policies are not perceived as sufficiently threatening to warrant such a step. the Union’s share of energy from foreign sources will rise from about half in 2000 to two-thirds by 2020. According to a study by the European Commission. In the future. growing distrust could prompt governments to take a more hostile approach. • Growing numbers of people around the world. as a result. is among the key uncertainties.” Most countries are likely to experiment with a variety of different tactics from various degrees of resistance to engagement in an effort to influence how US power is exercised.… Thus sharper demand-driven competition… perhaps accompanied by a major disruption of oil supplies.” Deliveries from the Yamal-Europe pipeline and the Blue Stream pipeline will help Russia increase its gas sales to the EU and Turkey by more than 40 percent over 2000 levels in the first decade of the 21st century. Moreover. “…many of the areas… being counted on to provide increased [energy] output involve substantial political or economic risk. Despite the rise in anti-Americanism. as the largest energy supplier outside of OPEC. Algeria has the world’s eighth largest gas reserves and also is seeking to increase its exports to Europe by 50 percent by the end of the decade. most major powers today believe countermeasures such as balancing are not likely to work in a situation in which the US controls so many of the levers of power. especially in the Middle East and the broader Muslim world. Russia’s share of total European demand will rise from 27 percent in 2000 to 31 percent in 2010. Gas use will increase most rapidly due to environmental concerns and the phasing out of much of the EU’s nuclear energy capacity. combined with depleting reserves in the North Sea.Europe’s increasing preference for natural gas. will give an added boost to political efforts already under way to strengthen ties with Russia and North Africa.
key alliances and relationships with Europe and Asia undergo change. In other forms of bargaining. with Washington remaining the central pivot for international politics. Fictional Scenario: Pax Americana The scenario portrayed below looks at how US predominance may survive radical changes to the global political landscape. complex. including on the Middle East. and fast-paced world. Many countries increasingly believe that the surest way to gain leverage over Washington is by threatening to withhold cooperation. It is depicted as the diary entry by a fictitious UN Secretary-General in 2020. but the United States still does the heavy lifting. Under this scenario. 64 . we identify lessons learned from how the scenario played out. US-European cooperation is renewed.temporarily—in order to force or cajole the US into playing by others’ rules. The scenario also suggests that Washington has to struggle to assert leadership in an increasingly diverse. foreign governments will try to find ways to “bandwagon” or connect their policy agendas to those of the US—for example on the war on terrorism—and thereby fend off US opposition to other policies. At the end of the scenario. There are new security arrangements in Asia.
will place enormous strains on governments. “…backsliding by many countries that were considered part of the ‘third wave’ of democratization is a distinct possibility. Regimes that were able to manage the challenges of the 1990s could be overwhelmed by those of 2020. slipping back toward authoritarianism. which in turn would spur democratization.” Chinese leaders will face a dilemma over how much to accommodate pluralistic pressure and relax political controls or risk a popular backlash if they do not. which would be enhanced if its rulers moved towards political reform. Central Asian governments are likely to suppress dissent and revert to authoritarianism to maintain order. In particular. by 2020 democratization may be partially reversed among the states of the former Soviet Union and in Southeast Asia. • With migration on the increase in several places around the world— from North Africa and the Middle East into Europe. but economic globalization and the dispersion of technologies. and increasingly from Southeast Asia into the northern regions—more countries will be multi-ethnic and multi-religious and will face the challenge of integrating migrants into their societies while respecting their ethnic and religious identities. China may pursue an “Asian way” of democracy that might involve elections at the local level and a consultative mechanism on the national level. perhaps Halting Progress on Democratization Global economic growth has the potential to spur democratization. but backsliding by many countries that were considered part of the “third wave” of democratization is a distinct possibility. aging Central Asian rulers must contend with unruly and large youth populations lacking broad economic opportunities. Contradictory forces will be at work: authoritarian regimes will face new pressures to democratize. Latin America and the Caribbean into the United States. and global economic growth probably will not on its own reverse such a trend. Russia and most of the Central Asian regimes appear to be 73 . • Beset already by severe economic inequalities. risking growing insurgencies. Beijing also has to weigh in the balance its ambition to be a major global player. The development of more diversified economies in these countries—by no means inevitable—would be crucial in fostering the growth of a middle class.New Challenges to Governance The nation-state will continue to be the dominant unit of the global order. but fragile new democracies may lack the adaptive capacity to survive and develop. especially information technologies. some of which never really embraced democracy.
xenophobia—to define Russian identity. and Azerbaijan. In the view of the experts. Russia and the Central Asians are likely to cooperate in developing transportation corridors for energy supplies. Eurasia is likely to become more differentiated despite the fact that demographic counterforces—such as a dearth of manpower in Russia and western Eurasia and an oversupply in Central Asia—could help pull the region together. Russia. Russia would need to undertake structural changes and institute the rule of law. and Kyrgyzstan—faced potential collapse. with considerable potential for religious and ethnic conflict over the next 15 years. If Russia fails to diversify its economy. In that case. Tajikistan. Central Asian states are weak. For countries with more limited natural resources. Kyrgyztan. Krgyzstan. requiring better governance. and growing radical Islamic influence. His successors may well define Russian identity by highlighting Russia’s imperial past and its domination over its neighbors even as they reject communist ideology. the experts foresaw more unity if economic conditions worsen globally and Eurasia is isolated.Eurasian Countries: Going Their Separate Ways? The regional experts who attended our conference felt that Russia’s political development since the fall of Communism has been complicated by the continuing search for a post-Soviet national identity. and our experts believe any efforts to expand immigration policies would be exploited by nationalist politicians. Religious and ethnic movements could have a destabilizing impact across the region. occasionally. Allowing more emigration could help alleviate these pressures in Central Asian countries. Putin has increasingly appealed to Russian nationalism—and. Russian nationalism is on the increase as a result of growing ethnic unrest domestically. Russia has the best prospects for expanding its economy beyond resource extraction and becoming more integrated into the world economy. and Uzbekistan— face the stiff challenge of keeping the social peace in a context of high population growth. which could in turn encourage foreign direct investment outside of the energy sector. Regional experts were less confident about the potential for significant economic diversification in the other resource-rich countries in Central Asia and the South Caucasus over the next 15 years—in particular. limited economic prospects. a stagnant Russia would be looked to by the others to maintain order along the southern rim as some Central Asian countries—Turkmenistan. it could well experience the petro-state phenomenon of unbalanced economic development. such as Ukraine. The participants assessed that among the resource-rich countries. 74 . capital flight. Central Asian countries—Kazakhstan. Georgia. Kazakhstan. Tajikistan. a relatively young population. has little experience in integrating migrants from other cultures. Moscow probably would be more tolerant of former Soviet states moving closer to Europe. Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. however. the challenge will be to develop effective project and service industries. Knowing that Europe probably would want to forge a “special relationship” with a Russia that is stronger economically. Ironically. Turkmenistan. Moreover. To diversify its economy. Russia would benefit from migration as a means of compensating for its loss of approximately one million people a year through 2020. huge income inequality. Turkmenistan. and increased social problems.
Reports of growing investment by many Middle Eastern governments in developing high-speed information infrastructures. mobilize. The trend toward even more capacity. Success in establishing a working democracy in Iraq and Afghanistan—and democratic consolidation in Indonesia—would set an example for other Muslim and Arab states. which thus far have been excluded from the process by repressive regimes. Many regional experts are not hopeful that the generational turnover in several of the regimes will by itself spur democratic reform. • the growth of civil society institutions. and accomplish tasks with potentially more satisfying and efficient results than their governments can deliver. Today individual PC users have more capacity at their fingertips than NASA had with the computers used in its first moon launches. An extended period of high oil prices would allow regimes to put off economic and fiscal reform. • The extent to which radical Islam grows and how regimes respond to its pressures will also have long-term repercussions for democratization and High-Tech Pressures on Governance. although radicals may use the ballot box to gain power. a 2001 Freedom House study showed a dramatic and expanding gap in the levels of freedom and democracy between Islamic countries and the rest of the world. This almost certainly will affect individuals’ relationships with and views of their governments and will put pressure on some governments for more responsiveness. creating pressures for change. show obvious potential for the spread of democratic—and undemocratic— ideas. However.with the Communist Party retaining control over the central government. Most of the experts at our regional conference. affordability. speed. • Younger Chinese leaders who are already exerting influence as mayors and regional officials have been trained in Western-style universities and have a good understanding of international standards of governance. and is the leading market for broadband communication. although they are not yet widely available to the population nor well-connected to the larger world. and mobility will have enormous political implications: myriad individuals and small groups— many of whom had not been previously so empowered—will not only connect with one another but will plan. • 75 . The lack of economic growth in the Middle East outside the energy sector is one of the primary underlying factors for the slow pace. according to the International Telecommunications Union. however. • Democratic progress could gain ground in key Middle Eastern countries. believe present and future leaders are agnostic on the issue of democracy and are more interested in developing what they perceive to be the most effective model of governance. • China is experiencing among the fastest rates of increase of Internet and mobile phone users in the world.
to take dramatic steps to reduce its consumption of fossil fuels. the European Union. and the need for significant technological innovation to maximize energy efficiency. and China— account for over half of all CO2 emitted into the atmosphere. as the largest producer of greenhouse gases. and the United States. Experts in a NIC-sponsored conference judged that concerns about greenhouse gases. Any of these events could lead to widespread calls for the United States. There is a strong consensus in the scientific community that the greenhouse effect is real and that average surface temperatures have risen over the last century. correctly or not. Among reasons for optimism. of which China and India are large producers. the developing world’s view that climate change is a problem created by the industrial world and one they cannot address given their economic constraints. in particular.Climate Change and Its Implications Through 2020 Policies regarding climate change are likely to feature significantly in multilateral relations. crafting a policy to limit carbon emissions would be simplified by the fact that three political entities—the United States. On the other hand. Policymakers will face a dilemma: an environmental regime based solely on economic incentives will probably not produce needed technological advances because firms will be hesitant to invest in research when there is great uncertainty about potential profits. and India would cover twothirds of all carbon emissions. Japan. will be linked to global warming. 76 . An agreement that included these three plus the Russian Federation. The numerous obstacles to multilateral action include resistance from OPEC countries that depend on fossil fuel revenues. There are likely to be numerous weather-related events that. participants noted that the world is ready and eager for US leadership and that new multilateral institutions are not needed to address this issue. a regime based on government regulation will tend to be costly and inflexible. will increase steadily through 2020. but uncertainty exists about causation and possible remedies. is likely to face significant bilateral pressure to change its domestic environmental policies and to be a leader in global environmental efforts. Indeed.
Growing connectivity also will be accompanied by the proliferation of transnational virtual communities of interest. A sense of economic progress and hope for its continuance appears essential to the long-term credibility of democratic systems. 77 . a trend which may complicate the ability of state and global institutions to generate internal consensus and enforce decisions and could even challenge their authority and legitimacy. the failure of elites to adapt to the evolving demands of free markets and democracy probably will fuel a revival in populism and drive indigenous movements. to consider more drastic means for seeking what they consider their “fair share” of political power and wealth. ethnic or other affiliations may be torn between their national loyalties and other identities. populism will not necessarily be inimical to political development and can serve to broaden participation in the political process. as with religion. The Latin American countries that are adapting to challenges most effectively are building sturdier and more capable democratic institutions to implement more inclusive and responsive policies and enhance citizen and investor confidence. which may emerge even more as a robust force in international affairs. Groups based on common religious. For example. such as Laos. are unable to deliver on expanding popular demands and risk becoming state failures. technology-enabled diaspora communications in native languages could lead to the preservation of language and culture in the face of widespread emigration and cultural change as well as the generation of political and economic power. cultural. Populist themes are likely to emerge as a potent political and social force.• Some states will seek to control the Internet and its contents. and Burma. especially as globalization risks aggravating social divisions along economic and ethnic lines. Rising nationalism and a trend toward populism also will present a challenge to governments in Asia. The potential is considerable for such groups to drive national and even global political decisionmaking on a wide range of issues normally the purview of governments. but they will face increasing challenges as new networks offer multiple means of communicating. Few experts fear a general backsliding to the rule of military juntas in Latin America. Many. Cambodia. The Internet in particular will spur the creation of global movements. In parts of Latin America particularly. which so far have sought change through democratic means. • However.
The experts made the following observations on regional prospects in other areas: • Identity politics. reach out to new partners in Asia and Europe. along with parts of Mexico. For Latin Americans. • 78 . investment. potentially. both as a mass media and means of inter-personal communication. the effects of continued economic growth and global integration are likely to be uneven and fragmentary. self-styled populist leaders. As the Southern Cone. who would play on popular concerns over inequities between “haves” and “have-nots” in the weakest states in Central America and Andean countries. and trade policy terms. particularly where the criminalization of the society. government ineffectiveness. will help educate. Many reject globalization as it has played out in the region. Increasing portions of the population are identifying themselves as indigenous peoples and will demand not only a voice but. the leaders could have an autocratic bent and be more stridently anti-American. particularly Brazil and Chile. viewing it as an homogenizing force that undermines their unique cultures and as a US-imposed. Indeed. the gap between rich and the poor. regional experts foresee an increasing risk of the rise of charismatic. Instead. Over the next 15 years. has grown. neo-liberal economic model whose inequitably distributed fruits are rooted in the exploitation of labor and the environment. In the most profoundly weak of these governments. prevented many countries from realizing the full measure of economic and social benefits from greater integration into the global economy in the past decade. Information technology. the represented and the excluded. along with Andean countries. in part. is most apparent. and empower those traditionally excluded.Latin America in 2020: Will Globalization Cause the Region to Split? The experts we consulted in Latin America contended that global changes over the next 15 years could deepen divisions and serve to split Latin America apart in economic. could lag behind and remain dependent on the US and Canada as their preferred trade partners and aid providers. and even the state. historically common in the region. mobilize. a new social contract. Central America and Mexico. connect. The universalization of the Internet.
Western Europe stands apart from this growing global “religiosity” except for the migrant communities from Africa and the Middle East. a shift that will reshape the traditionally Westernbased Christian institutions. By 2020. etc. Jewish fundamentalists in Israel. religious identity is likely to become an increasingly important factor in how people define themselves.” While we do not have comprehensive data on the number of people who have joined a religious faith or converted from one faith to another in recent years. growing diversity of hostile groups within states. religious identity is likely to become an increasingly important factor in how people define themselves.• Experts note that a new generation of leaders is emerging in Africa from the private sector. insistent secularism. and other religions and practices are spreading in such countries as China as Marxism declines. Many religious adherents—whether Hindu nationalists.—are now performed by the state. Christianity. or Muslim radicals—are becoming “activists. China and Nigeria will have some of the largest Christian communities in the world. more broadly. Many of the churches’ traditional functions— education. a developing world face. • • “Over the next 15 years. The trend toward identity politics is linked to increased mobility. and a religious belief system that connects local conflicts to a larger struggle. Identity Politics Part of the pressure on governance will come from new forms of identity politics centered on religious convictions and ethnic affiliation. social services. 79 .” They have a worldview that advocates change of society. Christian evangelicals in Latin America. giving them more of an African or Asian or. Buddhism. and the diffusion of modern communications technologies. however. • The primacy of ethnic and religious identities will provide followers with a ready-made community that serves as a “social safety net” in times of need— particularly important to migrants. trends seem to point toward growing numbers of converts and a deepening religious commitment by many religious adherents. might not foster the cultural acceptance of new Muslim immigrants who view as discriminatory the ban in some West European countries against displays of religious adherence. a tendency toward making sharp Manichaean distinctions between good and evil. these leaders are much more comfortable with democracy than their predecessors and might provide a strong internal dynamic for democracy in the future. Over the next 15 years. A more pervasive. Such communities also provide networks that can lead to job opportunities. and the proportion of evangelical converts in traditionally heavily Catholic Latin America is rising. • For example.
radical Islam’s increasing hold reflects the political and economic alienation of many young Muslims from their unresponsive and unrepresentative governments and related failure of many predominantly Muslim states to reap significant economic gains from globalization. August 4. 81 . They are committed to restructuring political society in accordance with their vision of Islamic law and are willing to use violence. rallying disparate ethnic and national groups and perhaps even creating an authority that transcends national boundaries.”10 At the same time. • In the Middle East. 2004.” which can foster strife. “with a social network that would otherwise be lacking… providing members with skills they need to survive in a rapidly developing society. 10 Philip Jenkins. The spread of radical Islam will have a significant global impact leading to 2020. scholars see the growth of evangelism in Latin America as providing the uprooted. the desire by activist groups to change society often leads to more social and political turmoil.. Part of the appeal of radical Islam involves its call for a return by Muslims to earlier roots when Islamic civilization was at the forefront of global change. In particular.11 • Youth bulges are expected to be especially acute in most Middle Eastern and West African countries until at least 2005-2010. which experts have correlated with high numbers of radical adherents. consultations with the National Intelligence Council. The collective feelings of alienation and estrangement which radical Islam draws upon are unlikely to dissipate until the Muslim world again appears to be more fully integrated into the world economy. and the effects will linger long after. Most of the regions that will experience gains in religious “activists” also have youth bulges. “Radical Islam will have a significant global impact… rallying disparate ethnic and national groups and perhaps even creating an authority that transcends national boundaries. including women. In keeping with the intense religious convictions of many of these movements.” Radical Islam will continue to appeal to many Muslim migrants who are attracted to the more prosperous West for employment opportunities but do not feel at home in what they perceive as an alien culture. 11 We define Muslim extremists as a subset of Islamic activists. activists define their identities in opposition to “outsiders. some of it violent. there are likely to be frictions in mixed communities as the activists attempt to gain converts among other religious groups or older established religious institutions.Such religious-based movements have been common in times of social and political turmoil in the past and have oftentimes been a force for positive change. Radical Islam..(and helping) to promote the development of civil society in the region. For example. racially disadvantaged and often poorest groups. including Muslim extremists.
• Schisms within religions. Regions where frictions risk developing into wider civil conflict include Southeast Asia. A Shia-dominated Iraq is likely to encourage greater activism by Shia minorities in other Middle Eastern nations. Differences over religion and ethnicity also will contribute to future conflict.Studies show that Muslim immigrants are being integrated as West European countries become more inclusive. however historic and longlasting. will be a cause of regional strife. but many second. The Philippines. if unchecked. including West Africa. and Indonesia. such as Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. where the historic Christian-Muslim faultlines cut across several countries.and third-generation immigrants are drawn to radical Islam as they encounter obstacles to full integration and barriers to what they consider to be normal religious practices. also could lead to conflict in this era of increased religious identity. and. 82 .
At the end of the scenario. Russia and China. Under this scenario. a new Caliphate is proclaimed and manages to advance a powerful counter ideology that has widespread appeal.Fictional Scenario: A New Caliphate The fictional scenario portrayed below provides an example of how a global movement fueled by radical religious identity could emerge. The scenario ends before the Caliph is able to establish both spiritual and temporal authority over a territory— which historically has been the case for previous Caliphates. we identify lessons to be drawn. Europe. It is depicted in the form of a hypothetical letter from a fictional grandson of Bin Ladin to a family relative in 2020. . places far outside the Muslim core in the Middle East—in Africa and Asia—are convulsed as a result of his appeals. He recounts the struggles of the Caliph in trying to wrest control from traditional regimes and the conflict and confusion which 83 ensue both within the Muslim world and outside between Muslims and the United States. While the Caliph’s success in mobilizing support varies.
We foresee a more pervasive sense of insecurity, which may be as much based on psychological perceptions as physical threats, by 2020. The psychological aspects, which we have addressed earlier in this paper, include concerns over job security as well as fears revolving around migration among both host populations and migrants. Terrorism and internal conflicts could interrupt the process of globalization by significantly increasing the security costs associated with international commerce, encouraging restrictive border control policies, and adversely affecting trade patterns and financial markets. Although far less likely than internal conflicts, conflict among great powers would create risks to world security. The potential for the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) will add to the pervasive sense of insecurity. Transmuting International Terrorism The key factors that spawned international terrorism show no signs of abating over the next 15 years. Experts assess that the majority of international terrorist groups will continue to identify with radical Islam. The revival of Muslim identity will create a framework for the spread of radical Islamic ideology both inside and outside the Middle East, including Western Europe, Southeast Asia and Central Asia. • This revival has been accompanied by a deepening solidarity among 93 Muslims caught up in national or regional separatist struggles, such as Palestine, Chechnya, Iraq, Kashmir, Mindanao, or southern Thailand and has emerged in response to government repression, corruption, and ineffectiveness. • A radical takeover in a Muslim country in the Middle East could spur the spread of terrorism in the region and give confidence to others that a new Caliphate is not just a dream. Informal networks of charitable foundations, madrasas, hawalas,12 and other mechanisms will continue to proliferate and be exploited by radical elements. Alienation among unemployed youths will swell the ranks of those vulnerable to terrorist recruitment.
“Our greatest concern is that [terrorist groups] might acquire biological agents, or less likely, a nuclear device, either of which could cause mass casualties.”
There are indications that the Islamic radicals’ professed desire to create a transnational insurgency, that is, a drive by Muslim extremists to overthrow a number of allegedly apostate secular
Hawalas constitute an informal banking system.
governments with predominately Muslim subjects, will have an appeal to many Muslims. • Anti-globalization and opposition to US policies could cement a greater body of terrorist sympathizers, financiers, and collaborators.
inspired but more diffuse Islamic extremist groups, all of which will oppose the spread of many aspects of globalization into traditional Islamic societies. • Iraq and other possible conflicts in the future could provide recruitment, training grounds, technical skills and language proficiency for a new class of terrorists who are “professionalized” and for whom political violence becomes an end in itself. Foreign jihadists—individuals ready to fight anywhere they believe Muslim lands are under attack by what they see as “infidel invaders”— enjoy a growing sense of support from Muslims who are not necessarily supporters of terrorism.
“…We expect that by 2020 al-Qa’ida will have been superceded by similarly inspired but more diffuse Islamic extremist groups.”
A Dispersed Set of Actors. Pressure from the global counterterrorism effort, together with the impact of advances in information technology, will cause the terrorist threat to become increasingly decentralized, evolving into an eclectic array of groups, cells, and individuals. While taking advantage of sanctuaries around the world to train, terrorists will not need a stationary headquarters to plan and carry out operations. Training materials, targeting guidance, weapons know-how, and fund-raising will increasingly become virtual (i.e., online). The core al-Qa’ida membership probably will continue to dwindle, but other groups inspired by al-Qa’ida, regionally based groups, and individuals labeled simply as jihadists—united by a common hatred of moderate regimes and the West—are likely to conduct terrorist attacks. The al-Qa’ida membership that was distinguished by having trained in Afghanistan will gradually dissipate, to be replaced in part by the dispersion of the experienced survivors of the conflict in Iraq. We expect that by 2020 al-Qa’ida will have been superceded by similarly 94
Even if the number of extremists dwindles, however, the terrorist threat is likely to remain. Through the Internet and other wireless communications technologies, individuals with ill intent will be able to rally adherents quickly on a broader, even global, scale and do so obscurely. The rapid dispersion of bioand other lethal forms of technology increases the potential for an individual not affiliated with any terrorist group to be able to inflict widespread loss of life. Weapons, Tactics, and Targets. In the past, terrorist organizations relied on state sponsors for training, weapons, logistical support, travel documents, and money in support of their operations. In a globalized world, groups such as Hizballah are increasingly self-sufficient in meeting these needs and may act in a state-like manner to preserve “plausible deniability” by supplying other groups, working through third parties to meet
the bioterrorist’s laboratory could well be the size of a household kitchen. a nuclear device. Indeed. smallpox or other diseases is typically delayed. Terrorist use of biological agents is therefore likely. but more terrorist attacks might . Historically. under a “nightmare scenario” an attack could be well under way before authorities would be cognizant of it. and the weapon built there could be smaller than a toaster. Concurrently.” The religious zeal of extremist Muslim terrorists increases their desire to perpetrate attacks resulting in high casualties. they can be expected to continue attempting to purchase or steal a weapon. terrorists will continue to seek to acquire fissile material in order to construct a nuclear weapon.their objectives. incorporating new twists to keep counterterrorist planners off balance. and the range of options will grow. The use of radiological dispersal devices can be effective in creating panic because of the public’s misconception of the capacity of such attacks to kill large numbers of people. Terrorists probably will be most original not in the technologies or weapons they employ but rather in their operational concepts—i. We expect that terrorists also will try to acquire and develop the capabilities to conduct cyber attacks to cause physical damage to computer systems and to disrupt critical information networks. Our greatest concern is that these groups might acquire biological agents or less likely. or support arrangements for attacks. Most terrorist attacks will continue to employ primarily conventional weapons. and even engaging governments diplomatically. Because the recognition of anthrax. “Terrorist use of biological agents is therefore likely. The United States and its interests abroad will remain prime terrorist targets.e. the use of such weapons by extremists before 2020 cannot be ruled out. either of which could cause mass casualties. possibly in widely separated locations. terrorists are likely to move up the technology ladder to employ advanced explosives and unmanned aerial vehicles. particularly in Russia or Pakistan. • One such concept that is likely to continue is a large number of simultaneous attacks. • While vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices will remain popular as asymmetric weapons. Given the possibility that terrorists could acquire nuclear weapons. 95 With advances in the design of simplified nuclear weapons. • Bioterrorism appears particularly suited to the smaller.. the scope. design. and the range of options will grow. better-informed groups. The most worrisome trend has been an intensified search by some terrorist groups to obtain weapons of mass destruction. religiously inspired terrorism has been most destructive because such groups are bound by few constraints.
exploit information technologies. If governments in countries with WMD capabilities lose control of their inventories. and cooperate with insurgent movements to control substantial geographic areas. insinuate themselves into troubled banks and businesses. Changing patterns of migration may introduce some types of organized crime into countries that have not previously experienced it. They will attempt to corrupt leaders of unstable. if it sees the end of its one-party system. Organized crime is motivated by the desire to make money and tends to regard any activity beyond that required to effect profit as bad for business. Some of the former states of the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact also will remain vulnerable to high levels of organized crime.. such as India. smuggled weapons. Organized criminal groups. and Brazil as well as Cuba. • Some organized crime syndicates will form loose alliances with one another. For their part. or clandestine travel assistance when the terrorists cannot procure these goods and services on their own. terrorist leaders are concerned that ties to non-ideological partners will increase the chance of successful police penetration or that profits will seduce the faithful.Organized Crime Changing geostrategic patterns will shape global organized criminal activity over the next 15 years. or failing states. • States that transition to one-party systems—such as any new Islamic-run state—will be vulnerable to corruption and attendant organized crime. particularly if their ideology calls for substantial government involvement in the economy. and unable or unwilling to consistently enforce the rule of law. We expect that the relationship between terrorists and organized criminals will remain primarily a matter of business. Russia. may take virtual control of regions within failing states to which the central government cannot extend its writ.e. economically fragile. 96 . however. China. i. the risk of organized crime trafficking in nuclear. vulnerable to corruption. that terrorists will turn to criminals who can provide forged documents. biological. particularly drug trafficking syndicates. are unlikely to form long-term strategic alliances with terrorists. Nigeria. Organized crime groups usually do not want to see governments toppled but thrive in countries where governments are weak. Organized crime is likely to thrive in resource-rich states undergoing significant political and economic transformation. • Criminal syndicates. or chemical weapons will increase between now and 2020. Ethnic-based organized crime groups typically prey on members of their own diasporas and use them to gain footholds in new regions.
intrusion into Internet-connected systems. Genocidal conflicts aimed at annihilating all or part of a racial. the Balkans. and conflicts caused by other crimes against humanity—such as be aimed at Middle Eastern regimes and at Western Europe. refineries.” creating conditions likely to spawn internal conflict.Cyber Warfare? Over the next 15 years. when the breakup of the Soviet Union and Communist regimes in Central Europe allowed suppressed ethnic and nationalist strife to flare. isolated disruptions. destabilizing neighboring countries. encounter the most severe and most frequent outbreaks of violence. or ethnic group. Those states unable both to satisfy the expectations of their peoples and to resolve or quell conflicting demands among them are likely to 97 . a growing range of actors. A key cyber battlefield of the future will be the information on computer systems themselves. Many of these conflicts generate internal displacements and external refugee flows. which is far more valuable and vulnerable than physical systems. those states most susceptible to violence are in a great arc of instability from Sub-Saharan Africa. The ability to respond to such attacks will require critical technology to close the gap between attacker and defender. may acquire and develop capabilities to conduct both physical and cyber attacks against nodes of the world’s information infrastructure. or through direct access by insiders. Although a leveling off point has been reached. ethnic affiliations. Terrorists already have specified the US information infrastructure as a target and currently are capable of physical attacks that would cause at least brief. “Lagging economies. ethnic affiliations. through North Africa. religious. and difficult to terminate. Intensifying Internal Conflicts Lagging economies. Countries in these regions are generally those “behind” the globalization curve. For the most part. into the Middle East. • The number of internal conflicts is down significantly since the late 1980s and early 1990s. and youth bulges will align to create a “perfect storm. including terrorists.” Internal conflicts are often particularly vicious. the continued prevalence of troubled and institutionally weak states creates conditions for such conflicts to occur in the future. and flood control mechanisms. New technologies on the horizon provide capabilities for accessing data. telecommunications networks. • Sub-Saharan Africa will continue to be particularly at risk for major new or worsening humanitarian emergencies stemming from conflict. The governing capacity of states. either through wireless intercept. intense religious convictions. long-lasting. including the Internet. the Caucasus and South and Central Asia and through parts of Southeast Asia. intense religious convictions. and youth bulges will align to create a ‘perfect storm’ [for] internal conflict. will determine whether and to what extent conflicts actually occur. and computer systems that control critical industrial processes such as electricity grids. however.
The absence of effective conflict resolution mechanisms in some regions. Now. and more destructive conventional munitions—create circumstances encouraging the preemptive use of military force. large-scale expulsions of populations—are particularly likely to generate migration and massive.” Should conflict occur that involved one or more of the great powers. unlike during previous centuries when local conflicts sparked world wars. India and Pakistan appear to understand the likely prices to be paid by triggering a conflict. Japan and Russia. 98 This does not eliminate the possibility of great power conflict. “Africa in 2020 … will increasingly resemble a patchwork quilt with significant differences in economic and political performance. risk escalating into regional conflicts. however. the rise of nationalism in some states. • Although a military confrontation between China and Taiwan would derail Beijing’s efforts to gain acceptance as a regional and global power. Rising Powers: Tinder for Conflict? The likelihood of great power conflict escalating into total war in the next 15 years is lower than at any time in the past century. • “Advances in modern weaponry—longer ranges. internal conflicts can produce a failing or failed state. virtually assured that small conflicts would be quickly generalized. however. even if conflict would break out over Taiwan or between India and Pakistan. we cannot discount such a possibility. as well as the two-bloc standoff during the Cold War.” Some internal conflicts. Under plausible scenarios Pakistan might use nuclear weapons to counter success by the larger Indian conventional forces. The rigidities of alliance systems before World War I and during the interwar period. intractable humanitarian needs. Events such as Taiwan’s proclamation of independence could lead Beijing to take steps it otherwise might want to avoid. But nationalistic feelings run high and are not likely to abate. with expanses of territory and populations devoid of effective governmental control. China. and the raw emotions on both sides of key issues increase the chances for miscalculation. just as China’s military buildup enabling it to bring overwhelming force against Taiwan increases the risk of military conflict. outside powers as well as the primary actors would want to limit its extent.forced. the consequences would be significant. At their most extreme. Advances in modern weaponry—longer . particularly those that involve ethnic groups straddling national boundaries. precision delivery. those territories can become sanctuaries for transnational terrorists (like al-Qa’ida in Afghanistan) or for criminals and drug cartels (such as in Colombia). Europe. particularly given Pakistan’s lack of strategic depth. In such instances. the growing dependence on global financial and trade networks increasingly will act as a deterrent to conflict among the great powers—the US. India. Additionally.
those with good leadership that promotes order. with the prospect of prosperity decreasing the level of conflict. Sub-Saharan Africa is well endowed with them and has the potential not only to be self-sufficient in food. criminal networks that operate freely across borders. democratic reform will remain slow and imperfect in many countries due to a host of social and economic problems. The lowering or elimination of tariff barriers and agricultural subsidies in the European Union and the United States. Some states may fail but in others the overall quality of democracy probably will increase. who are more comfortable with democracy than their predecessors and who could provide a strong political dynamic for democracy in the future. African experts have agreed that economic reform and good governance are essential for high economic growth and also have concluded that African countries must take the initiative in negotiating new aid and trade relationships that heretofore were essentially dictated by the international financial institutions and the developed world. is possible.How Can Sub-Saharan Africa Move Forward? Most of the regional experts we consulted believe the most likely scenario for Africa in 2020 is that it will increasingly resemble a patchwork quilt with significant differences in economic and political performance. could make a huge. Leadership will remain the ultimate wild card. with its peer review mechanism. 99 . and fish products. if its members individually and collectively honor their commitments. could provide major stimulus to African economies and overcome decades of depressed commodity prices. and establish the rule of law. An emerging generation of leaders includes many from the private sector. provides one mechanism for bringing about this economic transformation. and conflict resolution will at least have a chance of progressing. improve governance. and Islamic groups bent on establishing safehavens. an expansion of foreign investment. Although mineral and natural resources are not evenly distributed among its countries. animal. Our regional experts felt that if African leaders used such investment to help their economies grow—opening avenues to wealth other than through the power of the state— they might be able to mitigate the myriad other problems facing their countries. but to become a major exporter of agricultural. institutions. Africa’s capacity to benefit from the positive elements of globalization will depend on the extent to which individual countries can bring an end to conflict. even in the least promising circumstances. but it is highly unlikely that democracy will be challenged as the norm in Africa. Although countries with poor leadership will find it harder not to fail. which currently is mostly confined to the oil sector. combined with the demand for raw materials from the burgeoning Chinese and Indian economies. African leaders face alliances of international and domestic nongovernmental organizations that sometimes want to supplant certain state services. positive difference. rein in corruption. Over the next 15 years. The New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD). If progress is achieved in these areas. Expanded development of existing or new sources of wealth will remain key. which.
and more destructive conventional munitions— create circumstances encouraging the preemptive use of military force. Until strategic defenses become as strong as strategic offenses.ranges.” Chemical and Biological Weapons. precision delivery. as we have noted. including former private entrepreneurs such as the A. • Given the goal of some terrorist groups to use weapons that can be employed surreptitiously and generate dramatic impact. The increased range of new missile and aircraft delivery systems provides sanctuary to their possessors. increasing the potential for agents that are more difficult to detect or to defend against. Developments in CW and BW agents and the proliferation of related expertise will pose a substantial threat. a number of countries will continue to pursue their nuclear. Under these circumstances. will reduce the time required for additional countries to develop nuclear weapons. particularly from terrorists. we expect to see terrorist use of some readily available biological and chemical weapons. military experts believe preemption is likely to appear necessary for strategic success.Q. Current nuclear weapons states will continue to improve the survivability of their deterrent forces and almost certainly will improve the reliability. especially in the Middle East and Northeast Asia. Over the next 15 years. Countries will continue to integrate both CW and BW production capabilities into apparently legitimate commercial infrastructures. • Major advances in the biological sciences and information technology probably will accelerate the pace of BW agent development. and lethality of their delivery systems as well as develop capabilities to penetrate missile defenses. • The assistance of proliferators. and biological weapons programs and in some cases will enhance their capabilities. Moreover. accuracy. may decide to seek them as it becomes clear that their 100 neighbors and regional rivals already are doing so. cause a possible shift in the balance of power. and increase the risk of conflicts escalating into nuclear ones. a number of recent hightechnology conflicts have demonstrated that the outcomes of early battles of major conflicts most often determine the success of entire campaigns. Khan network. further concealing them from scrutiny. “Countries without nuclear weapons … may decide to seek them as it becomes clear that their neighbors and regional rivals are already doing so. The open demonstration of nuclear capabilities by any state would further discredit the current nonproliferation regime. chemical. and BW/CW programs will be less reliant on foreign suppliers. • Countries without nuclear weapons. The WMD Factor Nuclear Weapons. there will be great premiums associated with the ability to expand conflicts geographically in order to deny an attacker sanctuary. Through 2020 some countries will continue to try to develop chemical agents designed to circumvent the .
and accuracy of the missile systems in their inventories. Security will remain at risk from increasingly advanced and lethal ballistic and cruise missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). particularly from terrorists. 101 . Several other countries are likely to develop space launch vehicles (SLVs) by 2020 to put domestic satellites in orbit and to enhance national prestige. States almost certainly will continue to increase the range..” Delivery Systems. Both North Korea and Iran probably will have an ICBM capability well before 2020 and will be working on improvements to enhance such capabilities. “Developments in CW and BW agents and the proliferation of related expertise will pose a substantial threat. By 2020 several countries of concern probably will have acquired Land-Attack Cruise Missiles (LACMs) capable of threatening the US Homeland if brought closer to US shores. although new regimes in either country could rethink these objectives.. An SLV is a key stepping-stone toward an ICBM: it could be used as a booster in an ICBM development.Chemical Weapons Convention verification regime. reliability.
Institutional reform might increasingly surface as an issue. especially the emerging powers. • Both supporters and opponents of multilateralism agree that Rwanda. lack of preparation. Such post-World War II creations as the United Nations and international financial institutions risk sliding into obsolescence unless they take into consideration the growing power of the rising powers. Nevertheless. Bosnia. terrorism. Building a global consensus on how and when to intervene is likely to be the biggest hurdle to greater effectiveness but essential in many experts’ eyes if multilateral institutions are to live up to their potential and promise. The problem of state failure—which is a source or incubator for a number of transnational threats—argues for better coordination between institutions. Many in the developing world believe power in international bodies is too much a snapshot of the post-World War II world rather than the current one. including the international financial ones and regional security bodies. continue to worry about setting precedents for outside intervention that can be used against them. unless and until they can be radically adapted to accommodate new actors and new priorities. As technology increases the capabilities of states to track terrorists.International Institutions in Crisis Increased pressures on international institutions will incapacitate many. and Somalia demonstrated the ineffectiveness. unless more global cooperation is achieved. Rising powers may see in the ethical and environmental debates an attempt by the rich countries to slow down their progress by imposing “Western” standards or values. Similarly. can only be effectively dealt with through early recognition and preventive measures. and access to biomedicines could become the source of hot debates among countries and regions. debates over environmental issues connected with tempering climate change risk scrambling the international order. pitting the US against its traditional European allies. These “new” issues could become the staples of international diplomacy much as human rights did in the 1970s and 1980s. such as failing states. Regionally based institutions will be particularly challenged to meet the complex transnational threats posed by economic upheavals. GMOs. 102 . as well as developed countries against the developing world. and weaknesses of global and regional institutions to deal with what are likely to be the more common types of conflict in the future. most problems. Many states. organized crime. Other issues that are likely to emerge on the international agenda will add to the pressures on the collective international order as well as on individual countries. Ethical issues linked to biotechnological discoveries such as cloning. concerns about privacy and extraterritoriality may increasingly surface among publics worldwide. and WMD proliferation.
the outcry over former Serbian President Milosevic’s treatment of Kosovars spurred greater acceptance of the principle of international humanitarian interventions. continues to be vigorously contested by countries worried about harm to the principle of national sovereignty. The role of the United States in trying to set norms is itself an issue and probably will complicate efforts by the global community to come to an agreement on a new set of rules. however. A debate over the degree to which religious leaders and others who are perceived as abetting or inciting violence should be considered international terrorists is also likely to come to the fore. Containing and limiting the scale and savagery of conflicts will be aggravated by the absence of clear rules.The Rules of War: Entering “No Man’s Land” With most armed conflict taking unconventional or irregular forms—such as humanitarian interventions and operations designed to root out terrorist home bases— rather than conventional state-to-state warfare. The Iraq war has raised questions about what kind of status. This principle. and interrogate POWs or detainees. Both the international law enshrining territorial sovereignty and the Geneva Conventions governing the conduct of war were developed before transnational security threats like those of the twenty-first century were envisioned. the principles covering resort to. if any. 103 . providing support to those in the “just war” tradition who have argued since the founding of the UN and before that the international community has a “duty to intervene” in order to prevent human rights atrocities. military force will increasingly be called into question. Protection for nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in conflict situations is another issue that has become more complicated as some charitable work—such as Wahabi missionaries funding terrorist causes—has received criticism and enforcement action at the same time that Western and other NGOs have become “soft targets” in conflict situations. The legal status and rights of prisoners taken during military operations and suspected of involvement in terrorism will be a subject of controversy—as with many captured during Operation ENDURING FREEDOM in Afghanistan. and use of. to accord to the increasing number of contractors used by the US military to provide security. In the late 1990s. man POW detention centers.
The enormous costs in resources and time for meaningful nationbuilding or post-conflict/failed state stability operations are likely to be a serious constraint on such coalition or international commitments. but more so with the growing importance of cultural. if the past decades are any guide waging and winning a conventional war is unlikely to be much of a challenge over the next 15 years in light of our overarching capabilities to conduct such a war. but Sub-Saharan Africa will struggle with attracting sufficient resources and political will. while the other is strictly for hire. more countries might want to arm themselves for their own protection. but at the same time. the international community’s efforts to prevent outbreaks and ensure that conflicts are not a prelude to new ones could remain elusive.” Fictional Scenario: Cycle of Fear This scenario explores what might happen if proliferation concerns increased to the point that largescale intrusive security measures were taken. This scenario is depicted in a series of text-message exchanges between two arms dealers. who appear to be engaged in lucrative deals. However. Africa’s effort to build a regional peacekeeping force shows some promise. fear begets fear. with the spread of WMD. Neither knows for sure who is at the end of his chain—a government client or terrorist front. the cycle of fear originating with WMD-laden terrorist attacks has gotten out of hand—to the benefit of the arms dealers. • Nation-building is at best an imperfect concept. The draconian measures increasingly implemented by governments to stem proliferation and guard against terrorism also have the arms dealers beginning to run scared. As the scenario progresses. proliferators—such as illegal arms merchants—might find it increasingly hard to operate. One is ideologically committed to leveling the playing field and ensuring the Muslim world has its share of WMD. In all of this. Post-Combat Environments Pose the Biggest Challenge For the United States particularly. ethnic. and religious identities.“Such post-World War II creations as the UN and international financial institutions risk sliding into obsolescence unless they take into consideration the growing power of the developing world. • • 104 . However. In such a world. globalization may be the real victim.
. I worry about the chip. A big hit happened before hoof and mouth. And I have other buyers who are interested. especially bw. Lots of people sympathize. Those terrorists are ruining our business. It's going to be difficult. America's got a lot of support 'cause of the terrorists. not just the Americans. But the yanks are doing us a favor. The bomb's important. . And to get back at the Crusaders? That too. Don't be so sure. How? In procuring it? No. How do you know you didn't help the terrorists? Can't know for certain. Even when it isn't WMD. Moving it. Dubai was so civilized. The material he is interested in could be nuclear technology. That series of attacks spooked everybody. went overboard. I say. Dealer B (gold phone) warns that the tide of international public opinion may be turning in favor of stronger counter-proliferation because of the terrorist attacks. . Still I worry. Yeah they really got the superpower on the run. . The more talk of military action.Two arms dealers engage in unspecified illegal activity. and are finding conducting business increasingly difficult. . Dealer A (green phone) seems to think he is working for a country. America also had its share of the real thing. Both dealers indicate they are increasingly worried about new devices that can track them. I want my people and faith to be respected. I heard. Their military threats got my client's attention. He can't wait now for things to happen. Regular hoof and mouth. Too many eyes on me. However. U're in one of the poorest countries You'r telling me. Hard to tell the difference at first. but now it's impossible to operate there. but I think my ultimate client's different. People also leery of attacks. Yeah. Let's say more shady types. Yeah I know you're committed. I'm in it for the money. the better. worry even in Muslim world. he intimates that terrorists are also interested in doing business with him. That new Patriot Act went way beyond anything imagined after 9/11. You're kidding. they think it is. . are u there? Marco contacted me already. Doesn't matter too much who pays just so long as they do.
. The dealer's quip about there being no relation is an obvious inside joke. Big brother and some of the smaller fry.about the terrorists and their capabilities. You're right. . But maybe not as many as they think. Conversation breaks off at this point. With the world slipping into a recession because of the terrorist attacks and the severe clampdown. Yeah. What do you mean? My client's scared s------. of course. Sa'id contacted you? Yeah. Legitimate businesses are now turning a blind eye and selling dual-use technology even when they have doubts about the end user. You can't trust the Americans. the in-between mentioned in last month's conversation. special measures. A month later. Dealer A (in black) again talks to Dealer B (in blue).Got one imbedded in you? D-. Talk of preemption.well better not. Too much has happened. Those operations last year wrapped up a big chain. Against big brother. . and they have friends in the world to help them. but I don't beleive what those guys claim about protecting privacy. What happened to globalization? Ha. ha. Lots of legits going belly up. but that's not bad for business Which business? I've got several to tend to. if you know what I mean. Lots of countries want an insurance policy. Marco. which are shown in new colors. martial law. Dealers have also changed devices. has changed aliases and is now known as Sa'id. or they run them. Dealer A (in green) looks on the bright side. No relation to marco. which may or may not be his real name. . The first dealer also reverts to his theme that the downturn in the world economy has been a boon to the illegal business. he thinks he can get legitimate businesses to look the other way. Yeah some have turned into ministates. Dealer A (in green ) goes back to explaining why the increased terrorist attacks have also increased government interest in WMD programs.
This recession's helping. This would indicate that authorities inside some countries remain helpful despite the clampdown or outward cooperation with the United States. They get confused by our names. Some mbating the io ld and the plication in co the dealers in the scenar between the Muslim wor A com one of ing field exemplified byoney but to level the play em in it for th ructed by was not obst West. Are u there? Where are u? It is not clear if text messaging has failed to go through. One month later Yeah but they traced it back from the subsidiary. "Lessons Lea rned" · · · attacks. A little hangup with the certification. and terrorist read of WMD greater sense of increasing sp to break. as e ideological deterrence. Just don't have an ear for it. Why the feds? It wasn't transiting America. Got some help in other country. Corporate type told me he was questioned. operation wh co international lenge. but with plausible deniability. muhammed. Can't keep up-marco. sa'id. w ies to ac once under more countr ight prompt insecurity m factor. But he was cool. r al commerce omic meltdown could spu ation so that intern ant since any econ it illegal lance crative. It may have something to do with nuclear technology or possibly other illicit goods. Got the stuff through? Dealer A (in black) is no doubt being intentionally cryptic about the material for fear of interception. He said Feds did not suspect. D would be th dealers would not be spread of WM story. Dealer B has gone underground or been swept up by a security roundup. One would hope Dealer A is now getting nervous. Witting or unwitting? I'd say witting. What do you mean? Makes the corporate world an easy target. albe Achieving a ba rity would be import in a highly lu ive secu sts to engage excess scienti sinesses and legitimate bu cle might en the fear cy activity. The or erated by an fear cycle gen ould be one of the hardest quire WMD for protection The way. Have to be extremely careful these days. d sustaining ld be a chal eveloping an ou D go it alone w drive some to · .
and a fourth is the breakdown of the international order because of growing insecurity. The most important tipping points include the impact of robust economic growth and the spread of technology. will be better positioned than most countries to adapt to the changing global environment. As we map the future.Policy Implications The international order will be in greater flux in the period out to 2020 than at any point since the end of the Second World War. the nature and extent of terrorism. and the potential spread of conflict. Counterterrorism efforts in the years ahead—against a more diverse set of terrorists who are connected more by ideology and technology than by geography—will be a more elusive challenge than focusing on a relatively centralized organization such as al-Qa’ida. underlining the wide range of factors. the prospects for global prosperity and the limited likelihood of great power conflict provide an overall favorable environment for coping with the challenges ahead. in particular. The looser the connections . particularly if they involve WMD. In a sense. another is the security role played by the US. which exemplify largely positive forces by spreading technology. and uncertainties shaping a new global order. terrorist campaigns that escalate to unprecedented heights. including between states. a third is the role of social and religious identity. the scenarios provide us with four different lenses on future developments. Despite daunting challenges. are one of the few developments that could threaten globalization. Such actors range from terrorists. discontinuities. one of the lessons of that and the other scenarios is the need for management to ensure globalization does not go off the rails. promoting social and economic progress. we see several ways in which major global changes could begin to take shape and be buffeted or bolstered by the forces of change over the next 15 years. The evolving framework of international politics in all the scenarios suggests that nonstate actors will continue to assume a more prominent role even though they will not displace the nation-state. to NGOs and global firms. the resiliency or weakness of states. who will remain a threat to global security. particularly in the Middle East. robust economic growth probably will help to overcome divisions and pull more regions and countries into a new global order. the United States. As we have noted in the Cycle of Fear scenario. However. One lens is the globalized economy. as the hypothetical Davos World scenario 111 shows. The United States and other countries throughout the world will continue to be vulnerable to international terrorism. Central Asia. As our scenarios illustrate. They highlight various “switching points” that could shift developments onto one path or the other. and providing humanitarian assistance. for example. and Africa. • On balance. the rapid changes might also produce disorder at times.
Is the United States’ Technological Prowess at Risk? US investment in basic research and the innovative application of technology has directly contributed to US leadership in economic and military power during the postWorld War II era. Americans, for example, invented and commercialized the semiconductor, the personal computer, and the Internet with other countries following the US lead.a While the United States is still the present leader, there are signs this leadership is at risk. The number of US engineering graduates peaked in 1985 and is presently down 20 percent from that level; the percentage of US undergraduates taking engineering is the second lowest of all developed countries. China graduates approximately three times as many engineering students as the United States. However, post-9/11 security concerns have made it harder to attract incoming foreign students and, in some cases, foreign nationals available to work for US firms.b Non-US universities—for which a US visa is not required—are attempting to exploit the situation and bolster their strength. Privately funded industrial research and development—which accounts for 60 percent of the US total—while up this year, suffered three previous years of decline.c Further, major multinational corporations are establishing corporate “research centers” outside of the United States. While these signs are ominous, the integrating character of globalization and the inherent strengths of the US economic system preclude a quick judgment of an impending US technological demise. By recent assessments, the United States is still the most competitive society in the world among major economies.d In a globalized world where information is rapidly shared—including cross-border sharing done internally by multinational corporations—the creator of new science or technology may not necessarily be the beneficiary in the marketplace.
“Is America Losing Its Edge? Innovation in a Globalized World.” Adam Segal, Foreign Affairs, November December 2004; New York, NY p.2. b “ Observations on S&T Trends and Their Potential Impact on Our Future.” William Wulf (President, National Academy of Engineering). Paper submitted to the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in support of the National Intelligence Council 2020 Study, Summer 2004. c “ Is America Losing Its Edge?,” p.3. d Global Competitiveness Report 2004-2005, World Economic Forum, http://www.weforum.org. October 2004.
among individual terrorists and various cells, the more difficult it will be to uncover and disrupt terrorist plotting. • One of our scenarios—Pax Americana—envisages a case in which US and European consensus on fighting terrorism would grow much stronger but, under other scenarios, including the hypothetical New Caliphate, US, Russian, Chinese and European interests diverge, possibly limiting cooperation on counterterrorism.
opportunities, and empowerment of Muslim reformers would be viewed positively by the broad Muslim communities who do not support the radical agenda of Islamic extremists. A New Caliphate scenario dramatizes the challenge of addressing the underlying causes of extremist violence, not just its manifest actions. • The Middle East is unlikely to be the only battleground in which this struggle between extremists and reformers occurs. European and other Muslims outside the Middle East have played an important role in the internal ideological conflicts, and the degree to which Muslim minorities feel integrated in European societies is likely to have a bearing on whether they see a clash of civilizations as inevitable or not. Southeast Asia also has been increasingly a theater for terrorism.
“The US will have to battle world public opinion, which has dramatically shifted since the end of the Cold War.”
The success of the US-led global counterterrorism campaign will hinge on the capabilities and resolve of individual countries to fight terrorism on their own soil. Efforts by Washington to bolster the capabilities of local security forces in other countries and to work with them on their priority issues (such as soaring crime) would be likely to increase cooperation. • Defense of the US Homeland will begin overseas. As it becomes more difficult for terrorists to enter the United States, they are likely to try to attack the Homeland from neighboring countries.
A counterterrorism strategy that approaches the problem on multiple fronts offers the greatest chance of containing—and ultimately reducing—the terrorist threat. The development of more open political systems, broader economic
Related to the terrorist threat is the problem of the proliferation of WMD and the potential for countries to have increased motivation to acquire nuclear weapons if their neighbors and regional rivals are doing so. As illustrated in the Cycle of Fear scenario, global efforts to erect greater barriers to the spread of WMD and to dissuade any other countries from seeking nuclear arms or other WMD as protection will continue to be a challenge. As various of our scenarios underline, the communications revolution gives proliferators a certain advantage in striking deals with each other and eluding the authorities, and the “assistance” they provide can cut years off the time it would take for countries to develop nuclear weapons.
How the World Sees the United States In the six regional conferences that we hosted we asked participants about their views of the role of the United States as a driver in shaping developments in their regions and globally. Asia Participants felt that US preoccupation with the war on terrorism is largely irrelevant to the security concerns of most Asians. The key question that the United States needs to ask itself is whether it can offer Asian states an appealing vision of regional security and order that will rival and perhaps exceed that offered by China. US disengagement from what matters to US Asian allies would increase the likelihood that they would climb on Beijing’s bandwagon and allow China to create its own regional security order that excludes the United States. Participants felt that the rise of China need not be incompatible with a US-led international order. The critical question is whether or not the order is flexible enough to adjust to a changing distribution of power on a global level. An inflexible order would increase the likelihood of political conflict between emerging powers and the United States. If the order is flexible, it may be possible to forge an accommodation with rising powers and strengthen the order in the process. Sub-Saharan Africa Sub-Saharan African leaders worry that the United States and other advantaged countries will “pull up the drawbridge” and abandon the region. Participants opined that the United States and other Western countries may not continue to accept Africa’s most successful “export,” its people. The new African diaspora is composed overwhelmingly of economic migrants rather than political migrants as in previous eras. Some participants felt that Africans worry that Western countries will see some African countries as “hopeless” over the next 15 years because of prevailing economic conditions, ecological problems, and political circumstances. Participants feared that the United States will focus only on those African countries that are successful. Latin America Conference participants acknowledged that the United States is the key economic, political, and military player in the hemisphere. At the same time, Washington was viewed as traditionally not paying sustained attention to the region and, instead of responding to systemic problems, as reacting primarily to crises. Participants saw a fundamentalist trend in Washington that would lead to isolation and unilateralism and undercut cooperation. Most shared the view that the US “war on terrorism” had little to do with Latin America’s security concerns. Latin American migrants are a stabilizing force in relations with the United States. An important part of the US labor pool, migrants also remit home needed dollars along with new views on democratic governance and individual initiative that will have a positive impact on the region. (Continued on next page…)
participants agreed that the United States has only limited influence on the domestic policies of the Central Asian states. they believed. Regarding the prospects for democracy in the region. particularly American. and energy problems to the alliance. it was agreed that Arabs/Muslims are nervous that certain aspects of globalization. Although the Middle East has a lot to gain economically from globalization. There was general agreement that if the United States and Europe can engage with and encourage reformers rather than confront and hector. The perceived propping up of corrupt regimes by the United States in exchange for secure oil sources has in itself helped to promote continued stagnation. Ukraine almost certainly will continue to seek admission to NATO and the European Union while Georgia and Moldova probably will maintain their orientation in the same direction.(Continued…) How the World Sees the United States US policies also can have a positive impact. Some Middle East experts argued that Washington has reinforced zero-sum politics in the region by focusing on top Arab rulers and not cultivating ties with emerging leaders in and outside the government. which. the EU-US relationship could be strained to the breaking point. Countries in western Eurasia. Europe and Eurasia Participants engaged in a lively debate over whether a rift between the US and Europe is likely to occur over the next 15 years with some contending that a collapse of the US-EU partnership would occur as part of the collapse of the international system. Disengagement is highly unlikely but would in itself have an incalculable effect. is only one element of the democratization process. • • They were divided over whether China’s rise would draw the United States and Europe closer or not. values and morality are a threat to traditional cultural and religious values. genuine democracy would be achieved sooner. Some participants said the region would benefit from US application of regional mechanisms to resolve problems rather than punitive measures against regimes not to its liking. will continue to seek a balance between Russia and the West. Several participants contended that if the United States shifts its focus to Asia. participants felt that the West placed too much emphasis on the holding of elections. such as that of Fidel Castro. Middle East Participants felt that the role of US foreign policy in the region will continue to be crucial. while important. They also differed over the importance of common economic. In our Eurasia workshop. 115 . especially the pervasive influence of Western. In their view. although US success or failure in Iraq would have spillover effects in Central Asia. environmental.
dealing with a rising Asia may be the most challenging of all its regional relationships. advances in technology.” On the more positive side. nontraditional ad hoc alliances are likely to develop. The dramatically altered geopolitical landscape also presents a huge challenge for the international system as well as for the United States. For example. and greater divisions in the transatlantic partnership—remain uncertain and variable. which has been the security guarantor of the postWorld War II order. dealing with a rising Asia may be the most challenging of all its regional relationships. • With the lessening in ties formed during the Cold War. and how they are dealt with will be important factors shaping future US-Asia ties as well as the US role in the region. crossroads location. The possible contours as several trends develop— including rising powers in Asia. the high-tech leaders are not the only ones that can expect to make gains. “For Washington. our scenario points up the beneficial effects of possible new technologies in Africa in helping to eradicate poverty. and the shape and scope of globalization. global firms will play a key role in promoting more widespread prosperity and more technological innovation. one of the likely features of the next 15 years is the greater availability of high technology. For example. A key uncertainty is whether the rise of China and India will occur smoothly. Both the Korea and Taiwan issues are likely to come to a head. shared interest in multilateralism as a cornerstone of international relations has been viewed by some scholars as the basis for a budding relationship between Europe and China. As the Pax Americana scenario suggests. A number of issues will be in play. not only to those who invent it. stable governments. including the future of the world trading system.” Asia is particularly important as an engine for change over the next 15 years. a roiling Middle East. but also those societies that integrate and apply the new technologies. In other respects—GDP. The degree to which Europe is ready to shoulder more international responsibilities is unclear and depends on its ability to surmount its economic and demographic problems as well as forge a strategic vision for its role in the world. One could envisage a range of possibilities from the US enhancing its role as regional balancer between contending forces to Washington being seen as increasingly irrelevant. and collective military expenditures—it has the ability to increase its weight on the international stage. As we try to make clear in our Davos World scenario. Japan’s 116 . the transatlantic partnership would be a key factor in Washington’s ability to remain the central pivot in international politics. retrenchment in Eurasia. As we have noted elsewhere in this paper. For Washington.“A counterterrorism strategy that approaches the problem on multiple fronts offers the greatest chance of containing—and ultimately reducing—the terrorist threat.
” With the rise of the Asian giants. • While interdependencies will grow. market reforms. Europe. The trajectories of these Eurasian states will be affected by external powers such as Russia. Some of our scenarios highlight the extent to which the Middle East could remain at the center of an arc of instability extending from Africa through Central and Southeast Asia. especially Central Asia and the Caucasus. but also on helping the poor or failing states scattered across a large portion of the world’s surface which have yet to modernize and connect with the larger. even though it has enormous internal problems on its own plate. Providing economic opportunities alone may not be sufficient to enable the “havenots” to benefit from globalization. China. Realization of a Caliphate-like scenario would pose the biggest challenge because it would reject the foundations on which the current international system has been built. US dependence on foreign oil supplies also makes it more vulnerable as the competition for secure access grows and the risks of supply-side disruptions increase. Farther to the West. radicalism in the form of Islamic extremism.position in the region is also likely to be transformed as it faces the challenge of a more independent security role. Such a possibility points up the need to find ways to engage and . and progress toward an Arab-Israeli peace would stem the shift towards more radical politics in the region and foster greater accord in the transatlantic partnership. providing fertile ground for terrorism and the proliferation of WMD. India and the United States. US economic and technological advantages may be vulnerable to erosion. Ukraine. which may be able to act as stabilizers. with its large number of potentially failing states. greater democracy. “A key uncertainty is whether the rise of China and India will occur smoothly. rather. and importance as a supplier or conveyor belt for energy supplies to both West and East. where about two thirds of the world’s population resides. Russia is likely to be particularly active in trying to prevent spillover. increased Asian investment in hightech research coupled with the rapid growth of Asian markets will increase the region’s competitiveness across a wide range of economic and technical activity. probably will be an area of growing concern. and Moldova could offset their 117 • In the Middle East. Eurasia. the widespread trend toward religious and cultural identification suggests that various identities apart from the nationstate will need to be accommodated in a globalized world. globalizing community. The interdependence that results from globalization places increasing importance not only on maintaining stability in the areas of the world that drive the global economy. integrate those societies and regions that feel themselves left behind or reject elements of the globalization process. Belarus. Two of our scenarios—Pax Americana and Davos World—point up the different roles that the United States is expected to play as security provider and as a financial stabilizer.
will recognize the military superiority of the United States. International and regional institutions also would need to be reformed to • . Governance and leadership—often a wild card—will distinguish societies that prosper from those that remain ill-equipped to adapt. while those—such as the Andean nations currently—that do not or cannot will be left behind. In that vein.vulnerabilities as relatively new states by closer association with Europe and the EU. more countries will be in a position to contest the United States in their regions. “…no single country looks within striking distance of rivaling US military power by 2020. including terrorism and illicit acquisition of WMD. and Kashmir to ensure they do not get out of hand if a peace settlement cannot be reached. The possession of chemical.” As our Pax Americana scenario dramatizes. potentially relieving the United States of some of the burden. Most US adversaries. Taiwan. Both regions may have success stories— countries like Brazil or South Africa— which can provide a model for others to follow. the number of interstate and internal conflicts has been ebbing. • China’s and. as illustrated in the Cycle of Fear scenario. Rather than acquiesce to US force. North Africa may benefit particularly from growing ties with Europe. India’s increasing military spending and investment plans suggest they might be more able to undertake a larger security burden. North Korea. the United States probably will continue to be called on to help manage such conflicts as Palestine. and/or nuclear weapons by more 118 • countries by 2020 would increase the potential cost of any military action by the United States and its coalition partners. the scenarios and trends we analyze in the paper suggest the challenge will be to harness the power of new players to contribute to global security. As the hypothetical Davos World scenario suggests. using asymmetric strategies. Parts of Africa share a similar profile with the weak states of Eurasia and will continue to form part of an extended arc of instability. However. • While no single country looks within striking distance of rivaling US military power by 2020. be they states or nonstate actors. to a lesser extent. biological. Latin America is likely to become a more diverse set of countries: those that manage to exploit the opportunities provided by globalization will prosper. globalization in terms of rising commodity prices and expanded economic growth may be a godsend where good governance is also put in place. they will try to circumvent or minimize US strengths and exploit perceived weaknesses. The United States is uniquely positioned to facilitate Latin America growth and integration stemming the potential for fragmentation. Such a shift could usher in a new phase in international politics. but their lethality and potential to grow in impact once they start is a trend we have noted.
including the United States. younger leaders are more likely than their predecessors to diverge with Washington’s thinking on a range of issues. the Kyoto climate change treaty exemplifies how formerly nontraditional policy issues can come to the fore and form the core of budding new networks or partnerships. the Middle East and others. on the other hand. it makes it potentially harder to build a consensus because the media tends to magnify differences. which has dramatically shifted since the end of the Cold War. absent a single overarching threat on which to build consensus. Adapting the international order may also be increasingly challenging because of the growing number of other ethical issues that have the potential to divide worldwide publics. Asia. 119 . the United States will have many opportunities to fashion a new one. and equal treatment under the law. Although some of the current anti-Americanism13 is likely to lessen as globalization takes on more of a nonWestern face. These issues include the environment and climate change. which will become more salient. freedom of the press. competing coalitions to achieve resolution of some of these issues. Such divergent interests underline the challenge for the international community. and military—that no other state can or will match by 2020. 13 • The Pew Research survey of attitudes around the world revealed sharply rising anti-Americanism. the media can also facilitate discussions and consensus-building. Large majorities in almost every Muslim country favor free market economic systems and believe that Western-style democracy can work in their own country. playing a pivotal role across the broad range of issues— economic. multiparty political systems. • Whatever its eventual impact or success. international law regarding conflict.” Thus. especially in the Muslim world. The United States will have to battle world public opinion. technological. The media explosion cuts both ways: on the one hand. Even as the existing order is threatened. the younger generation of leaders—unlike during the post-World War II period—has no personal recollection of the United States as its “liberator. as the Pax Americana scenario suggests. Many ethical issues.meet the challenges and shoulder more of the burden. but it also found that people in Muslim countries place a high value on such democratic values as freedom of expression. Finally. For all the challenges ahead. potential biotechnology and IT intrusions into privacy. the United States may be increasingly confronted with the challenge of managing—at an acceptable cost to itself—relations with Europe. in having to deal with multiple. political. cut across traditional alliances or groupings that were established to deal mainly with security issues. human rights. the United States will nevertheless retain enormous advantages. cloning and stem cell research. and the role of multilateral institutions.